Probably the rainforest areas in today's Republic of
Guinea were populated by pygmies who lived as hunters
and gatherers before the Christian era. In the first
millennium AD various cattle breeding and migrant
farming tribes immigrated and settled the area. Large
parts of the country were temporarily under the
influence of the western Sudanese empire Gana, which
continued until the 9th century AD. Endured. In the 13th
century, the east of today's Guinea belonged to the
Islamic Kingdom of Mali (now the Republic of Mali ),
which lost influence in the 15th century.
In the mid-15th century, the coast of Guinea was
discovered by Portuguese seafarers who, over the next
few decades, set up isolated branches along the coast
but did not advance inland.
In the 16th century, members of the nomadic Fulbe
migrated from the north and settled mainly in the Fouta
Djalon mountains. They founded an Islamic state here,
some of which extended into what is now Mali.
The clashes between the two European colonial powers
Great Britain and France over the areas in West Africa
began in the second half of the 19th century. France was
able to assert itself in Guinea and began settling in
the coastal region. According to AbbreviationFinder,
around the same time, a Malinke
empire formed under the leadership of Samori Ture (Samory
Tour¨¦) on the course of the upper Niger near the
present-day city of Kankan, which had succeeded in
uniting previously hostile tribes. In contrast to the
Fulbe chiefs, who concluded protectorate contracts with
the French, the Malinke in the northeast successfully
resisted the advancing French troops.
In 1882 the French founded the "Rivi¨¨res du Sud"
colony, and in 1891 it was combined with the hinterland
of what is now Guinea to form the French Guinea colony.
A year earlier, the troops of Malinke Samory Tour¨¦s had
been smashed and forced to sign a "friendship contract".
In 1895 French Guinea was annexed to the General
Government "Afrique Occidentale Française" (AOF / French
West Africa). A little later, the French started
building a railway line between the port city of Conakry
and Kankan inland.
After the end of World War II, political and trade
union organizations formed in Guinea. In 1947 S¨¦kou
Tour¨¦, a grandson of the Malinke resistance fighter, was
involved in the founding of the left-wing "Parti
D¨¦mocratique de Guin¨¦e" (PDG), as well as a year earlier
in the independence movement "Rassemblement D¨¦mocratique
Africain" (RDA ). In 1952 Tour¨¦ became chairman of the
In 1957, French Guinea was granted internal autonomy.
The popular PDG won the first elections to the state
parliament based in Conakry. S¨¦kou Tour¨¦ became the
country's first prime minister. A year later, Guinea was
the only French colonial in West Africa to refuse to
join the "Communaut¨¦ Française" in a popular referendum,
and declared its independence as the Republic of Guinea
in October 1958. As a result, the former colonial power
removed all of its inventory including existing
industrial facilities and specialists from Guinea and
ceased all financial support for the country, which led
to serious economic problems in Guinea.
Tour¨¦ subsequently sought the Soviet Union and the
Eastern Bloc countries. His leadership style became
increasingly authoritarian, the ruling party PDG
developed into a unity party. In 1961 Tour¨¦ also took
over the office of President and was able to further
expand his position of power. Threatened by drastic
"cleansing measures", more than two million people left
Guinea by 1970, including countless intellectuals and
Guinea founded the "Union of African States" together
with Mali and Ghana in July 1961 white minority
In the first half of the 1970s, after several
unsuccessful coup attempts against S¨¦kou Tour¨¦, the army
and party were cleaned up again. Due to the poor
economic situation in the country, Tour¨¦ tried to
re-establish relations with the former colonial power
France and also to establish economic contacts with the
other western industrial nations.
The dictator died in 1984, and after a bloodless coup
d'¨¦tat, the military, led by Colonel Lansana Cont¨¦, took
over. The ruling party PDG was dissolved and the
re-privatization of the companies nationalized by Tour¨¦
began. In a referendum in December 1990, the people of
Guinea voted in favor of a new constitution that
included a civilian government and a multi-party system.
At the end of 1991 the new constitution came into force
and political parties were founded which were only
approved by the head of state after increased internal
political pressure. Relevant groups were above all the
"Parti de l'Unit¨¦ et du Progr¨¨s" (PUP) by Lansana Cont¨¦
and "Rassemblement du Peuple Guin¨¦en" (RPG) under the
leadership of Alpha Cond¨¦.
It wasn't until December 1993 that the first free
presidential election took place in Guinea. Head of
state and government Lansana Cont¨¦ was confirmed in
office with over 50% of the votes cast. The opposition
(challenger Alpha Cond¨¦ and the RPG) accused the
government of electoral fraud. The parliamentary
elections had to be postponed several times due to
failed coup attempts against Cont¨¦ and serious riots and
only took place in June 1995. The governing "Parti de
l'unit¨¦ et du progr¨¨s" (PUP) by head of state Lansana
Cont¨¦ won the majority of seats in parliament.
In 1998, Lansana Cont¨¦ was re-elected in the
presidential election, again the opposition spoke of
massive electoral fraud. When the leading opposition
politicians Alpha Cond¨¦ and Mamadou Bah were arrested a
year later, there was serious unrest across the country.
Cond¨¦ was released from custody in May 2001.
From September 2000, border conflicts with the
neighboring civil war countries Sierra Leone and Liberia
increased due to attacks by guerrilla organizations. The
work of the international aid organizations operating in
Guinea, which cared for the refugees from Sierra Leone
and Liberia in Guinea (an estimated 450,000), which was
severely affected. Despite various meetings between
politicians from Liberia and Guinea, the relationship
between the two countries has not improved.
The Cont¨¦ PUP won by a clear majority in the
parliamentary elections held at the end of June 2002
with a delay of two years (they were postponed several
times by President Cont¨¦ because of a rebellion). The
leader of the opposition party "Rassemblement du Peuple
Guin¨¦en" (RPG), Alpha Cond¨¦, had been excluded from the
election on charges of conspiracy; the opposition
therefore spoke of electoral fraud. President Lansana
Cont¨¦ was confirmed in the 2003 presidential election
with 95.6% of the vote for another term. Most opposition
parties boycotted the election.
A general strike in January 2007, which paralyzed
public life for weeks, called for the resignation of the
autocratically ruling and now seriously ill president.
When the violence escalated and the mass protest started
to spread to the popular uprising, Cont¨¦ appointed his
closest confidante, Eug¨¨ne Camara, as the new head of
government. After further riots, which claimed many
lives, Cont¨¦ declared the state of emergency. Finally he
withdrew Camara's appointment and appointed diplomat
Lansana Kouyat¨¦ as the new Prime Minister. However, the
hope of the population for reforms and an improvement in
living conditions associated with Kouyat¨¦ was not
fulfilled; unrest continued due to food, energy and
water shortages, strengthened after Kouyat¨¦ was replaced
as Prime Minister by Ahmed Tidiane Souar¨¦ in May 2008.
Souar¨¦ belonged to the president '
Cont¨¦ remained president until his death on December
22, 2008. The military took the lead a few hours after
his death. After that, a National Council was founded,
which Eug¨¨ne Camara was to lead until new elections
would take place. In 2009, however, Camara was the
victim of an attack and was seriously injured. After
that, he was effectively disempowered. His deputy took
over the official business and changed the course. A new
constitution was promulgated in May 2010 and the first
round of presidential elections took place a month
later. The run-off elections were then postponed for
several months. Since December 2010 Alpha Cond¨¦ has been
President of Guinea with 52.5% of the vote. This is the
first time the country has a democratically elected