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Election Commission Says Gambia's President to Concede Defeat

Gambia's president Yahya Jammeh shows his inked finger before voting in Banjul, Gambia, Dec. 1, 2016.

The head of Gambia's electoral commission said Friday that President Yahya Jammeh will concede defeat in the country's presidential election.

The announcement came from commission chair Alieu Momarr Njai, who told reporters in Banjul that it's "very unique" that Jammeh would accept defeat after ruling the country for so long.

There was no immediate confirmation of Njai's statement from Jammeh.

Partial returns have shown Jammeh trailing challenger Adama Barrow, the candidate for a coalition of seven opposition parties.

Jammeh, 51, has ruled the tiny West African nation since taking power in a military coup in 1994. State media said he will make a statement later in the day.

Gambia is a former British colony that occupies a narrow sliver of land surrounded by French-speaking Senegal.

Some 880,000 Gambians were eligible to vote in Thursday's poll, which took place under a complete communications blackout, including social media platforms.

The president has warned that no protests would be allowed after the election.