By OMar Bah
The Gambia Armed Forces public relations officer, Lt Col. Omar Bojang has yesterday told The Standard that they have not received any report of a shooting in Sibanor.
Bojang was reacting to reports on social media of shooting incident involving a soldier and a suspected timber trafficker at Sibanor. According to him, they got reports that a driver was allegedly manhandled by the Senegalese security forces in the area, but there have not been any reports of a shooting.
Explaining further, Bojang said: “The forces that are stationed along Kanilai, Bwiam and Sibanor are part of a bilateral agreement between the governments of The Gambia and Senegal. We are working hand in glove with the Senegalese.
We have a battalion stationed at Sibanor who are sharing intelligence with the Senegalese and they do patrol together. As you know this is not the first time Gambia and Senegal are entering into security agreements of this nature. Time to time countries do enter into security agreements.”
Meanwhile, when contacted the ECOMIG Spokesman Michael Larbi said the regional force has no troops deployed at Sibanor.
“The Senegalese Contingent there is deployed as part of the bilateral agreement between The Gambia and Senegal. These troops are not part of ECOMIG; therefore they operate under a separate mandate based on the agreement between the two countries,” he added.
He said there is a misconception about ECOMIG deployment, adding that the Force’s Headquarters intends to issue an official clarification today.