Soldiers lock down Gambia capital after overnight shooting

Reuters News
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Posted: Dec 30, 2014 5:13 AM

DAKAR (Reuters) - Gunfire erupted in Gambia's capital Banjul overnight and soldiers blocked the bridge that provides access to the center of the seaside city on Tuesday morning, residents said.

A diplomat said unknown gunmen had attacked State House during the night but shooting died down later. There were reports on local media and on Twitter of an attempted coup but there was no immediate comment from the authorities.

Gambia's President Yahya Jammeh, who came to power in a coup 20 years ago, has stifled dissent in the tiny West African nation during his rule and faced increased criticism from abroad over a poor human rights record.

(Reporting by Bate Felix; Writing by David Lewis; editing by John Stonestreet)