Tension Mounts as Guinea Allegedly Encroaches on Sierra Leone’s Territory
MONROVIA – Latest report from Sierra Leone says the Guinean Army have invaded Yenga Town, which forms the border between Sierra Leone and Guinea and reportedly erected concrete pillars to re-demarcate the boundary between the two countries.
According to Sierra Leone’s publication Politico, the latest move by the Guinean Forces, if confirmed would be the first time in 20 years for the Guinean Army to have taken such an action aimed at escalating the two-decade long crisis.
The publication, quoting the manager of a local FM station, said prior to the latest incident, Senior National Security officials from both countries met in Guinea. Following the meeting, the Sierra Leonean delegation returned and assured the villagers that the situation has been put under control. However, to the villagers’ surprise, the Guinea soldiers, in large number and well-armed, returned with cement and sand which they used and quickly erected the concrete pillars.
However, amid high tensions, there are reports Sierra Leonean authorities will be travelling across the border in the coming days to continue their dialogue with the Guineans.
Guinea and Sierra Leone are two-member countries of the Mano River Union, a regional bloc consisting of four countries including Liberia and Ivory Coast. The region was engulfed in turmoil during the 1990s and early 2000s when the nations were either engulfed in civil wars or accused of fueling conflicts across each other’s borders.