Guinea-Bissau: In defiance of the law
The murder of a senior military officer in March 1993 in the context of a mutiny by some units of the armed forces led to scores of arbitrary arrests and the denial of the detainees' rights to due process of law. Those detained included Joao da Costa, president of the opposition Democratic Renewal Party (PRD), and Tagme Na Waie, a member of the Guinea-Bissau Resistance Movement (RGB-MB), who were arrested on 14 April. The detainees were held incommunicado while being questioned by a military Commission of Inquiry, which in addition to allowing parts of some detainees' statements to be shown on television, also ignored for two weeks a Supreme Court order that Joao da Costa be brought before a judge within 48 hours to challenge the legality of his detention.
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