U.S. Urges Gambia to Free Detainees After New Death in Custody

(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. government urged Gambia to immediately release opposition figures who were arrested earlier this year after a second detainee died in custody on Aug. 20.

The State Department said on its website it was “deeply concerned” by the death of Ibrima Solo Krummah, an official of the main opposition United Democratic Party, who had been held since May. Krummah died after an operation but it wasn’t clear why he was in the hospital, Agence France-Presse reported on Monday, citing a member of his party.

In April, Amnesty International announced the death in custody of Solo Sandeng, a well-known activist and organizing secretary of the UDP. Gambia carried out a wave of arrests after a rare public protest to call for electoral reform. President Yahya Jammeh, who seized power in a 1994 coup, is known for stifling every form of dissent against his authoritarian rule.