Gambia's former President Yahya Jammeh, a vocal opponent of LGBT rights, on Saturday boarded a plane to Guinea after conceding defeat.

Jammeh initially accepted the results of the December 1 election and reportedly called opposition candidate Adama Barrow to concede. But within days he called for new elections, claiming voting irregularities.

Jammeh, who took power in a 1994 military coup and has a long history of homophobic remarks, said in a television address that he had decided “in good conscience to relinquish the mantle of leadership of this great nation with infinite gratitude to all Gambians.”

The BBC reported that Jammeh's reversal came after talking with the presidents of Guinea and Mauritania.

Jammeh told the nation that it was “not necessary that a single drop of blood be shed.”

A swearing in ceremony at the Gambian embassy in neighboring Senegal was held Thursday for President Adama Barrow.

Jammeh had repeatedly threatened the lives of gay men living in Gambia.

“If you do it [in Gambia], I will slit your throat. If you are a man and want to marry another man in this country and we catch you, no one will ever set eyes on you again, and no white person can do anything about it,” he said in 2015.

Barrow's views on LGBT rights are not known.