Gabon's Jean Ping reacts to 'stolen' elections on social media

The attack, by uniformed members of the presidential guard, came after Mr Ping's supporters set fire to the parliament buildings in protest at the official results, which gave President Bongo 49.8 per cent of the vote, compared with Jean Ping's 48.2 per cent.

As soon as Bongo's victory in Saturday's poll was announced, people took to the streets of the city's slums, chanting "Ali must go".

The results of the presidential election, announced earlier on Wednesday, handed Bongo a second term and extended the almost five-decade rule by his family. Hundreds were reportedly injured.

The result extends for another seven years the Bongo family's half-century grip on power in a country where oil accounts for about 60 percent GDP.

The closed door meeting was called by permanent Security Council member France, French Ambassador Francois Delattre, during which members will hear a situation report by the United Nations envoy for central Africa, Abdoulaye Bathily.

The UN, US and former colonial power France have called for restraint and greater transparency about the results.

Among the many important buildings on this boulevard is the national assembly, which was set ablaze by protestors who also managed to break down the building's massive front door.

Ping, a political insider who has served as foreign minister and African Union Commission chairman, was a close ally of the late president and fathered two children with his daughter.

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Opposition leader Jean Ping said earlier that two had been killed.

Earlier on Wednesday, Ping took to social media to declare that the Republican Guard had launched aerial and ground attacks on his party's offices in the capital.

The European Union says the election results have plunged the African country into a "deep crisis" and is supporting France's calls for verification of each polling station result.

He said the election was fraudulent and "everybody knows" he won.

Ping called the result an "electoral coup" and accused Bongo of "massive fraud" in the province of Haut-Ogooue, a Bongo stronghold which saw an nearly 100 percent turnout compared to much-lower totals elsewhere in the country.

USA state department spokesman John Kirby said events in Gabon were being closely monitored by the global community and "appropriate actions" were being considered.

"We've never seen results like these, even during the father's time", he added.

He urged political leaders "to address their differences peacefully and to address any disputes they may have through existing constitutional and legal channels", the United Nations said in a statement.

  • Sonia Alvarado