On Friday Gambian President Yahya Jammeh rejected the outcome of the national election last week. He has called for a new election in the face of his loss to opposition leader Adama Barrow, a real estate developer and former security guard at retailer Argos in London.

Jammeh took over the West African nation in a military coup 22 years ago. After his unexpected defeat last week, he conceded on state TV.

The defeated candidate has been accused by human rights groups of unlawfully detaining, torturing and killing opponents throughout his presidency.

“After a thorough investigation, I have decided to reject the outcome of the recent election. I lament serious and unacceptable abnormalities which have reportedly transpired during the electoral process,” Jammeh said.

“I recommend fresh and transparent elections which will be officiated by a god-fearing and independent electoral commission,” he continued.

After the president’s statement, Reuters reported that witnesses described the capital, Banjul, as quiet, but fraught with tension.

United Nations powers were quick to respond. The U.S. State Department stated that Jammeh’s rejection of the results blatantly disregarded the political process to maintain illegitimate control of the nation.

Mankeur Ndiaye, Senegal’s foreign minister, requested an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council. He “solemly” advised Jammeh not to act against Senegal’s interest or any of its citizens in Gambia.

Senegal is a provisional member of the U.N. The nation shares Gambia’s only land border, entirely surrounding the small riverside country.

The Senegalese army was involved in a coup on Gambian soil in 1981.

Jammeh’s statements represent an unforeseen issue for the Barrow administration, which had a difficult path ahead in coping with transitioning power and authority to a nation and army that had been loyal to one president for over two decades.

According to Army chief General Ousman Badjie’s spokesman, the general has already sworn loyalty to Barrow. Diplomatic sources believe that a faction of soldiers from the Jola ethnic group—the group Jammeh is from—will maintain allegiance to the former president.

The head of Barrow’s transition team stated that the president-elect and his staff were secure in the midst of the political turmoil.

“We are consulting on what to do, but as far as we are concerned, the people have voted,” Mai Ahmad Fatty told Reuters. “We will maintain peace and stability and not let anyone provoke us into violence.”

The electoral commission stated that official election results gave Barrow 45.5 percent votes against Jammeh’s 36.7 percent.

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