Lesotho Leader Flees Country Under Threat Of Coup

Lesotho Prime Minister Thomas Thabane has fled the country, alleging a military coup and an attempt on his life.

Lesotho Leader Flees Country Under Threat Of Coup
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New reports coming out of Lesotho say its prime minister, Thomas Thabane, has fled the country under threat from a coup.

The Kingdom of Lesotho is surrounded on all sides by South Africa, and it's reported that's exactly where Thabane has gone. The BBC was able to speak by phone with the prime minister who expressed concern over a military takeover in Lesotho. (Video via Google)

PRIME MINITER THABANE TO BBC: "What is happening, the activities by the army that render a government dysfunctional amount to a coup ... I'm phoning you from outside Maseru, because I got information that this morning they were going to pay me a visit."

Maseru is Lesotho's capital, and it was here where the military reportedly "surrounded government and police buildings and gunfire was heard," according to ENCA. The outlet says all this "comes a day after police banned an anti-government protest that was planned for Monday."

The military holds that its actions were in the interest of safety. Apparently it caught word police were going to arm members of a political faction that backs the prime minister. This group would have served to oppose any anti-government protests.

SABC reports the country has faced political unrest for months. The deputy prime minister has been threatening to force out Thabane for some time. Back in June Prime Minister Thabane suspended parliament in an apparent attempt to avoid a motion of no-confidence.

Thabane insists he has one goal as prime minister: to stop government corruption. And he says this alleged coupe could be the result of that goal.  

This video includes images from Getty Images and Control Arms / CC BY 2.0.