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The Gambia arrests former intelligence chief linked to killings

The Gambia arrests former intelligence chief linked to killingsGambian police have arrested two top security allies of the former President Yahya Jammeh, accused of enforced disappearances and killings under ex-leader.

Yankuba Badjie, the head of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and his director of operations, Sheikh Omar Jangne now are in police custody as investigations continue. The duo were arrested on Monday.

“We have arrested Yankuba Badjie, former director of NIA, and Sheikh Omar Jagne, director of operations. Investigations are ongoing,” Foday Conta, spokesperson of Gambia police is quoted as saying.

The two men were at the NIA during the period when forced disappearances and killings were recorded under the Jammeh regime. Badjie is the first top official of the NIA to be arrested for questioning. Rights defenders have hailed the arrest as great news for victims of injustice.

President Adama Barrow late last month changed the name of the NIA to the State Intelligence Services (SIS) as part of efforts aimed at breaking it off its tainted past.

“The rule of the law, that will be the order of the day,” Barrow said at the time.

“We need an intelligence service. It’s an institution that has to continue, but the name will change,” he added.

Gambian police said this week they had arrested 51 people in a former Jammeh stronghold for harassing Barrow's followers.
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