E.Guinea opposition leader accuses govt of killing cousin

A sign with an image of Equatorial Guinea's President Teodoro Obiang Nguema.  By PATRICK FORT (AFP/File)

A sign with an image of Equatorial Guinea’s President Teodoro Obiang Nguema. By PATRICK FORT (AFP/File)

The leader of Equatorial Guinea’s main opposition party on Friday accused the country’s government of “assassinating” his cousin inside a prison in the capital Malabo.

“It is a state assassination, he was murdered. I have all the evidence, his neck was broken, his head was beaten and the blood flowed. He was murdered because he was my cousin,” Gabriel Nse Obiang Obono, head of the Citizens for Innovation (CI) party, told AFP.

His cousin Evaristo Oyegue Sima, a former army captain, had been imprisoned in Malabo’s Balack Beach Central Prison since 2016. He had been sentenced to four years’ prison for desertion, Nse Obiang said.

“His family visited him on Sunday at 2.00 pm (0100 GMT) and he was in good health. At 7.00 am Monday we called his family, who had found his body in a car,” Nse Obiang said.

Sima’s family said he had fled to Gabon before being arrested and extradited to Malabo in 2016.

The country’s state media did not report his death on Friday.

A former Spanish colony of 1.2 million people, awash with oil but mired in poverty and a reputation for corruption, Equatorial Guinea has been ruled with an iron fist by Teodoro Obiang Nguema since 1979.

After an attempted coup last December, CI says Obiang’s government has carried out a wave of arrests and torture in a brutal crackdown.

The European Union in February expressed concern over the “strong deterioration of the human rights situation”, recalling that a CI figure had previously died in custody.

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