Lesotho Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili has survived an assassination attempt by attackers who planned to seize power, the government said on Wednesday. Communications Minister Mothetjoa Metsing said gunmen opened fire on the prime minister’s house in an attack overnight in the capital of the mountain kingdom of around 2 million, which is surrounded by South Africa, and has an unstable political past.

lesotho“The incident was politically motivated. There are people who want to take over the government before the 2012 general election,” said Metsing on state radio. One of the suspects in the shooting was killed and two arrested in clashes with security forces, said the minister.

South African President Kgalema Motlanthe, who also chairs regional grouping SADC, described the attack as heinous. “SADC condemns any attempt at unconstitutional transfer of power. Such acts have no place in our region,” he said in a statement. He said South African security forces apprehended two of the “perpetrators”.

South African police officials declined comment. Mosisili’s Lesotho Congress for Democracy (LCD) scored a landslide win in a parliamentary election in February, 2007 and has ruled for 12 years but has been accused increasingly of failing to deliver on promises of economic growth and jobs.



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