The Government of Equatorial Guinea condemned actions by France and Switzerland that it said were designed to influence the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague as it deliberates over the case brought by Equatorial Guinea against France. Arguments in the case were heard in October.
In a statement, Equatorial Guinea accused “French lobby groups, with the complicity of Swiss media and institutions,” of conspiring in “a false and wholly negative media campaign” against the country’s Vice-President, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue.
It said the campaign was “launched…at the precise moment when the Judges in The Hague have to come to a decision regarding the action filed by Equatorial Guinea against France.”
Equatorial Guinea described information released by authorities in Switzerland regarding the seizure of various luxury vehicles that the Swiss said belonged to the vice-president as “absurd.” It said the vehicles were not the property of the Vice-President of Equatorial Guinea, but belonged instead to an Equatoguinean company.
It demanded the immediate return of the vehicles to the company, “their true owner.”
Equatorial Guinea filed an action against France before the ICJ, “to defend its sovereign right to non-intrusion and nonintervention in national affairs,” over French magistrates’ attempts to bring the Equatoguinean vice-president to trial.
The Government of Equatorial Guinea says it “has no doubt that this ferocious media campaign against the Vice-President of Equatorial Guinea, launched from various French media organizations just this week, is nothing but an attempt to influence the judges in The Hague, influence international public opinion, and as such, manipulate international justice.”
Equatorial Guinea also singled out Swiss media and government institutions that it said acted “at the request and in solidarity with France” and called on the authorities, media and institutions in Switzerland to maintain their historical neutrality.
The full text of the statement can be found at http://www.guineaecuatorialpress.com/noticia.php?id=8830.