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20.10.2008 Regional News

Northern Region mops up firearms

A special operation by military and police personnel has been mounted in the Northern Region to mop up all firearms still in the hands of civilians.

Confirming the operation in a telephone interview with the Daily Graphic, the Northern Regional Police Commander, DCOP Ofosu Mensah Gyeabour, appealed to the public to inform the police of any situation that might compromise the security and peace of the region.

He said the police and military had adopted what they deemed a "a necessary strategy to deal with the situation".

Last week, envoys of the European Union in Ghana, led by the French Ambassador, Mr Francis Hurtut, after a two-day visit to the Northern Region, raised concern over illegal arms still in the possession of civilians, so close to the December elections.

DCOP Gyeabour gave the assurance that intelligence was being gathered on the proliferation of arms in the area, as well as the activities of some suspected criminals and potential rioters.

He said a surveillance system was in place to help the police and the military to ensure that peace and security were maintained in the region.

Commenting on the joint operation in the north, the Minister of the Interior, Dr Kwame Addo-Kufuor pointed out that the government accepted responsibility for maintaining peace and stability in the country.

He also gave the assurance that the government would respect the results of the elections as the sovereign will of the people, freely expressed through the ballot box and accept those results, regardless of which party emerged victorious.

Dr Addo-Kufuor, however, stressed that despite that commitment, any person or group of persons who attempted to undermine the peace of the country would be made to face the full rigours of the law.

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