Coup d’etat in Guinea: Were US soldiers among the putschists soldiers?

Images of US soldiers accompanying Guinean special forces have created suspicions about the involvement of American soldiers in the September 5 putsch against Alpha Condé. A video shared since Wednesday, September 8, claims to prove the involvement of American soldiers in the September 5 coup in Guinea.

In the images, we see US soldiers in uniform in a pick-up, escorted by Guinean special forces. But in reality, this video shows a simple convoy of American soldiers returning from a mission to return to the United States embassy in Conakry.

Relayed by several African Facebook pages and Guinean media on Twitter, a video shows at least three soldiers in a pick-up with uniforms on which the American flag is visible.

Several armed soldiers wearing Guinean uniforms at the rear of the vehicle, some hooded and some visible. So while the US Embassy denies any US military involvement, claiming that the video was filmed on September 6, the day after the coup, footage has shown otherwise.

Indeed, buildings visible in the background and advertising panels allow the scene to be located precisely at the Bambéto roundabout, where spontaneous celebrations took place from the afternoon of September 5, shortly after the announcement of the arrest of Guinean President Alpha Condé.

buildings visible in the background and advertising panels allow the scene to be located precisely at the Bambéto roundabout
Buildings visible in the background and advertising panels allow the scene to be located precisely at the Bambéto roundabout, showing the same location at the Bambéto roundabout on Google Street View. ©Facebook/Google Map.

But, for the American embassy, it is about a small team of American soldiers engaged in a joint training exercise outside Conakry. In view of the evolving security situation, the team was decided to be transferred to the United States Embassy in Conakry the day after the putsch. Guinean security forces provided an escort to Conakry to ensure the team’s safe passage.

According to France 24 Observers, the United States Embassy claims that the video was filmed on September 6, the day after the coup, and provided the following details: “Prior to the events of September 5, a small team of US military personnel was engaged in a joint training exercise outside Conakry. In view of the evolving security situation, the team was decided to be transferred to the United States Embassy in Conakry [the next day, September 6, Editor’s note]. The Guinean security forces provided an escort to Conakry to ensure the team’s passage in complete safety. The video seems to illustrate part of this transfer. The United States government and military are not in any way involved in this military takeover. The United States strongly condemns these actions in Guinea, as well as any attempt to seize power by force or any unconstitutional action.”

The same story from the entourage of Colonel Doumbouya: “They were American soldiers who had come for a training mission and who were with us in the context of joint operations between Guinea and the United States”, entrusts to the editorial staff of France 24 Observers a source who wished to remain anonymous.

The latter adds: “Their presence in Guinea has absolutely nothing to do with what happened on September 5”.

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