MALABO, 26 July 2021 – Equatorial Guinea is planning to close its embassy in London in retaliation for Britain sanctioning a son of the president.
Few details are available on how the plan will be implemented and officials at the embassy in London were unable Monday to confirm any such initiative.
Twenty-four hours earlier, the country’s foreign minister, Simeon Oyono Esono, told state television that the plan was in the works.
There are speculations among diplomats in London and Malabo that the goal of announcing such a move without naming dates may be part of a pressure campaign on United Kingdom officials to end the sanctions.
Last week, London accused the vice-president of Equatorial Guinea, Teodoro Obiang Mangue, the son of President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbazogo, of using public money to fund his lavish lifestyle.
London imposed a travel ban on him as well as a freeze on his assets anywhere in the United Kingdom and in English banks.
Equatorial Guinea says the sanctions are illegal and are being justified by outright lies.
Obiang Mangue has spent billions of dollars buying up mansions around the world. He owns an expensive private jet and is known for spending millions of dollars buying memorabilia of pop star Michael Jackson.
Obiang Nguema Mbazogo is Africa’s longest-serving president. He came to power in a military coup against his uncle more than 40 years ago.