Soldiers kill Guinea-Bissau president

Comes hours after bomb blast takes life of his rival, the fragile West African nation's armed forces chief.

March 2, 2009 12:56
Soldiers kill Guinea-Bissau president

Vieira 248.88. (photo credit: AP)


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Renegade soldiers killed Guinea-Bissau President Joao Bernardo Vieira in his palace on Monday, hours after a bomb blast took the life of his rival, the fragile West African nation's armed forces chief. The military said in a statement broadcast on state radio that no coup was in progress. The armed forces statement said the military would respect the constitutional order, in which the head of the parliament succeeds the president in the event of his death. The statement attributed Vieira's assassination to an "isolated" group of unidentified soldiers and said the military was now hunting them down. In November, renegade soldiers attacked Vieira's home with automatic weapons, killing at least one guard in a failed coup attempt that was repulsed by loyalist security forces.

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