Residents of Anjouan fear violence due to dispute over presidential election.
Yahya Abdallah, the Sudanese commander, said as he arrived with a deployment of paratroopers: “We are happy to be here… The Comoran people are our Muslim brothers and we are proud to be able to help them.”
Each of the Comoros federation’s three islands has its own president and government institutions. Bacar has ruled Anjouan since 2002, but his re-election last year was deemed illegal by both the central authorities and the African Union (AU).
|“We have waited too long to please the international community and wait for these African troops”
Comoran army lieutenant
However, regional power South Africa and former colonial rulers France said diplomacy should not be abandoned.Pascale Andreani, a French foreign ministry spokeswoman, said: “We remain … in support of dialogue and a peaceful solution to this crisis.
The AU is backing Ahmed Abdallah Sambi, the archipelago’s president, to protect the territorial integrity of the Comoros. Bacar has said he is seeking Anjouan’s independence from the union.
The archipelago has survived 19 coups or coup attempts since it acquired independence from France in 1975.