Nigerian ECOMIG Peacekeeper dies in Gambia mission

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EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, THE GAMBIA: A member of Nigerian contingent that are on an ECOWAS Mission in The Gambia (ECOMIG) Staff Sergeant Abubakar Abdullahi have been announced death in The Gambia early Wednesday after experiencing irregular breathing while in his sleep and was rushed to the hospital for medical attention but he could not survive it.

A release from the mission high command stated that the body of Sgt. Abdulahi, 46 is currently being kept at the Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital Morgue in Banjul. “Arrangements are being made to convey the body home (Nigeria) for the necessary rites and burial in accordance with national, traditional and military customs.”

The ECOMIG high command expresses deepest condolence to the next of kin, family, the Nigerian Contingent and the Nigerian Armed Forces for this irreplaceable loss.

About the ECOMIG Mission

The ECOWAS military intervention in The Gambia or the ECOWAS Mission in The Gambia (ECOMIG ) code-named Operation Restore Democracy – is an ongoing military intervention in the Gambia by several West African countries. The intervention was launched to resolve a breakdown of internal order in the government of the Gambia that resulted from a dispute over the country’s presidency. The dispute had led to a constitutional crisis in the country. The intervention began in January 2017, and in June 2017, the term of the ECOWAS military mission was extended by a year.

The brief period of open conflict at the beginning of the mission was precipitated by the refusal to step down from power of
Yahya Jammeh , the long-standing
President of the Gambia, after he disputed the victory of Adama Barrow in the 2016 presidential election.

As a result of the intervention, Jammeh was forced to step down and go into exile two days after the initial military incursion. Following his departure, 4,000 ECOWAS troops remained in the Gambia to maintain order in preparation for Barrow to return and consolidate his presidency. Five days later, Barrow returned to the Gambia while requesting the ECOWAS troops (now numbering about 2,500) to stay for at least six months to help him firmly establish order.

Although there were a few reports of isolated minor clashes during the first few hours of the military incursion, there were no reports of casualties in the initial conflict. In the following months, two people have been reported killed and about ten injured in incidents surrounding protests against the continued military presence in the community.

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