ABSTRACT

West Africa is the region of coups d’état. Almost every second African military coup d’état takes place in its western region (McGowan 2003: 355). For a long time, this source of political instability was not of concern to neighboring states. After independence, African countries established non-interference in domestic affairs as a constitutive principle of inter-state relations (Clapham 1996: 110). Continental and regional organizations did not of¿cially comment on a case of unconstitutional change of government in a member state. They were not willing to intervene in order to protect the country’s constitution and enforce a particular political system.