The Gambia. According to COUNTRYAAH, Banjul is the capital of Gambia which is located in Western Africa. The unsuccessful coup attempt that was carried out on December 30, 2014 received its legal postponement during the year. A group led by Americans of Gambian origin took the opportunity when President Yahya Jammeh was overseas to try to take control of the presidential palace with arms. Their hope was that militants tired of Jammeh’s long-standing rule would support the coup. However, that was not the case and three of the coup makers were brought to trial in the United States since they succeeded in returning there. The men were indicted for violating the rarely-enforced Neutrality Act, which prohibits Americans from participating in military operations against “friendly-minded states.” In April, three Gambian soldiers were sentenced to death for participating in the coup attempt and another three were sentenced to life imprisonment.
In June, the EU chargé d’affaires Agnès Guillaud was expelled from the country. No reasons for the expulsion were stated. On the 21st anniversary of his takeover of power in July 1994, President Jammeh pardoned over 200 sentenced persons. However, the three soldiers sentenced to death for the 2014 coup attempt were not pardoned. On the other hand, several relatives were released to persons accused of participating in the coup attempt.
In December, President Jammeh announced that Gambia is an Islamic state, referring to the fact that the majority of the population are Muslims and that the country must rid itself of its colonial past. At the same time, the president assured that some new dress codes for women would not be introduced and that the country’s religious minorities would still have their rights guaranteed. According to the opposition, the president was not entitled in this way to change the constitution of the country, according to which Gambia is a secular state. The month before, Jammeh had declared genital mutilation (female circumcision) prohibited with immediate effect, although it was unclear at the time when the formal legislation could be in place.