Sunday, December 13, 2015

Gambia's President Declares It an Islamic State

On Friday, the President of the West African nation of Gambia proclaimed the largely Muslim country to be an Islamic state.  According to Al Jazeera, Gambia's President Yahya Jammeh said that his country "cannot afford to continue the colonial legacy." However Jammeh pledged to protect the rights of Gambia's Christian community-- about 8% of its population, and said there will be no mandates as to dress.  Opposition politicians say that the Constitution provides that Gambia is a secular state. Some commentators suggest that Jammeh's move is an attempt to create closer relations with the Arab world after losing Western support because of the country's dismal human rights record and rampant corruption.