Forced disappearances, arbitrary detention, torture, and other human rights violations marked the government of President Yahya Jammeh, who came to power in a military coup in 1994. Gambian authorities routinely targeted voices of dissent, including journalists, human rights defenders, political opponents and critics, as well as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. Two UN special rapporteurs, who in 2014 gained access to the country for the first time, concluded that “torture is a consistent practice” by authorities and “avoiding arrest is a necessary preoccupation” for ordinary Gambians.