Under the leadership of Bob Denard, 30 French and Belgian mercenaries launched a coup d’état on November 26, 1989, during which Ahmed Abdallah was assassinated.
According to countryaah, the European mercenaries that formed part of the presidential guard corps were presumably funded by South Africa; at least some information indicated that the Comoros served as a supply base for the Mozambican rebels from RENAMO. For its part, France continued to have a contingent of 102 technicians present on the island, of whom 30 were engaged in setting up the Comorian army.
The French government suspended all financial aid to the archipelago and began negotiations aimed at expelling the European mercenaries, led by Bob Denard. As a consequence of these initiatives, a group of mercenaries left the islands in mid-December heading for South Africa. Before leaving, Bob Denard handed over the responsibility of the army to a contingent of French soldiers, while the Comorian president stated that the French were allowed to stay on the islands for the next one to two years.
The official restrictions on the political parties ceased after the killing of Abdallah, after which several opposition parties returned from their exile.
The IMF demanded a reduction in the number of public companies, which started very slowly in 1989.
In August 1991, the Supreme Court of the Republic declared President Said Mohammed Yohar dismissed, on charges of gross irresponsibility.
At the same time, a federation of all political parties from the island of Mwali with 25,000 inhabitants demanded a more equitable distribution of public and economic posts.
Following the failed attempt to oust the president in late 1991, President Yohar and the political parties signed a national reconciliation agreement. In January, a new government was formed, led by Mohamed Taki, president of the Comoros Democratic National Union.
President Yohat resigned Taki in July 1992, after accusing him of appointing a former French mercenary as a cabinet member.
A September coup attempt against Yohar, led by two of former President Mohamed Abdallah’s sons, failed. Several opposition leaders were arrested on charges of complicity in the coup attempt and at least 6 civilians were reported killed.
Due to “irregularities”, the first parliamentary elections were extended to last November and December. The opposition gained 25 seats in parliament and the ruling party 17. In June 1993, Ahmed Ben Cheikh Attoumane was appointed prime minister, but less than a year and a half later he was forced to resign after widespread public dissatisfaction with his rule.
Denard once again attempted to conduct a coup d’état in September, but he and 1000 of his supporters were forced to surrender by French troops who had arrived from Mayotte a few days later and the president was immediately set free. In October, while nearly 80-year-old Yohar was transferred to the island of Reunión to receive medical treatment, Prime Minister Caabi el Yachourtu Mohamed proclaimed himself new president and refused to surrender power to the returned president.