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Lusa - Business News - Equatorial Guinea: Country faces 'campaign' over death penalty - ambassador

Lisbon, Apr. 22, 2019 (Lusa) – Equatorial Guinea's ambassador to Portugal, Tito Mba Ada, on Monday claimed in a statement that the country was facing a "campaign" promoted by "hidden interests" to expel it from the Community of Portuguese-speaking Countries (CPLP).
The complaint comes after governors and former governors of several countries belonging to the Community, including Portugal, Angola, Cabo Verde and East Timor, discussed whether Equatorial Guinea should remain because it had not yet abolished the death penalty.
According to the ambassador’s statement, "immature declarations on the public square, with the intention to go around the operating mechanisms of the CPLP are a step towards the destruction of the organisation."
The statement also said Equatorial Guinea had been awaiting technical support from Portugal for over three years to find possible legal alternatives to the death penalty and had received no response.
While "the abolition of the death penalty in the country is a fact," legal alternatives were "more difficult to reach”.
The ambassador also lamented that the country was "obsessively presented as the vilest government system in the world."
The CPLP is composed of Angola, Brazil, Cabo Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea (which does not speak Portuguese), Mozambique, Portugal, Sao Tome and Principe and East Timor.
Equatorial Guinea, a former Spanish colony, became a member of the CPLP in July 2014 through an agreement to abolish the death penalty - which has not yet been ratified by the president - and start teaching Portuguese.
One of Africa's top oil producers, Equatorial Guinea has been ruled by Teodoro Obiang since 1979 and human rights organisations refer to it as one of the most authoritarian regimes worldwide.
On April 14, Portugal's prime minister, António Costa, said that if Equatorial Guinea wanted to remain in the CPLP it would have to comply with the community "common framework" which does not include the death penalty.
The former president of East Timor José Ramos-Horta on Wednesday said that the participation of Equatorial Guinea at the next summit of the Portuguese-language community should be conditional on the abolition of the death penalty before the meeting.
Lusa tried to contact the ministry of foreign affairs and the CPLP but has not been successful so far.


Agency : LUSA

Date : 2019-04-23 10:41:19


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