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Comoros wants return of ousted leader
Thu, 27 Mar 2008 13:09:27 GMT
Comoran renegade Colonel Mohamed Bacar
Comoros has demanded France to extradite ousted Anjouan leader Mohamed Bacar who has fled to the French Indian Ocean island of Mayotte.

"We were informed by the French authorities last night that Bacar had arrived in Mayotte with around 10 other people," Defense Minister Mohamed Bacar Dossar told reporters in Mutsamudu, the capital of Anjouan.

On Tuesday, Comoran forces, backed by African Union (AU) troops, in a military operation toppled Bacar, who had ruled Anjouan -- one of the Comoran federation's triple islands -- as a breakaway state since last year.

The coalition searched for two days for the 45-year-old colonel who ended up in Mayotte, the archipelago's fourth island, which did not join the Comoros' 1975 move to acquire independence from France.

"He left Anjouan on a speed boat, he has a brother in Mayotte and we know he contacted him," Dossar said.

"We hope France will consider the request formulated by the Comoran authorities for Bacar to be returned to the Comoros, where he should face trial," the minister added.

Bacar was re-elected as president of Anjouan in June 2007 but was not recognized by the central Comoran authorities and the AU, which have accused him of rebellion and torture, issuing an international warrant against him.

Dossar vowed to do everything to ensure that Bacar and his accomplices are brought back and sent to court in the Comoros, which has no extradition agreement with France.

MRS/GM

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