June 27, 2009 / 10:16 PM / in 8 years

TIMELINE-Guinea-Bissau, a history of coups and strife

June 28 (Reuters) - Following are key events in the history of Guinea-Bissau, an unstable West African country which holds a presidential election on Sunday.

July 1961 - The African Party for the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC) launches a guerrilla war against Portuguese rule.

Sept 10, 1974 - The state is officially established after the collapse of the Portuguese dictatorship, stretched to breaking point by the war. Luis Cabral becomes president.

Nov 14, 1980 - Prime Minister Joao Bernado Vieira overthrows Cabral; military-dominated revolutionary council takes control.

Aug 7, 1994 - Vieira, under foreign pressure to bring democracy, holds and wins multi-party presidential election in a second round.

Jun 7, 1998 - Failed coup attempt leads to civil war. Vieira wins military support from neighbouring states. Several thousand people killed.

May 7, 1999 - Soldiers topple Vieira and he flees into exile.

Nov 28, 1999 - Koumba Yala, a former philosophy professor, wins presidential election after transition period.

Sept 14, 2003 - Army seizes power, pledging to restore order after repeated delays to elections. Yala forced to step down.

July 24, 2005 - Vieira returns to the presidency as winner of the second round of an election.

March 2, 2009 - Vieira killed hours after the killing of the armed forces chief of staff. National assembly speaker Raimundo Pereira is sworn in a day later as interim head of state.

June 5 - Three senior politicians killed by military police in what authorities say is a foiled coup plot.

June 28 - Presidential election.

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