Wednesday, February 27, 2013

130 Injured In Clashes Between Guinean Police and Protesters

130 injured in clashes between Guinean police, protesters

Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:52PM GMT

At least 130 people have been injured in clashes between the Guinean police and opposition protesters, demanding a free and fair legislative poll in May.

On Wednesday, demonstrators took to the streets in the capital Conakry to demand a graft-free parliamentary election, AFP reported.

The protest turned violent after angry demonstrators hurled stones at police officers. In response, Guinean security forces used teargas canisters to disperse the protesters.

Reports say the injured included 68 police officers.

On February 19, a similar rally took place in the capital where protesters carried signs that read, “Yes to a Free and Transparent Election.”

The election should have taken place in 2011 but was repeatedly delayed until Guinea's National Independent Electoral Commission (CENI) announced in December 2012 that the legislative vote would go ahead this year.

The delays have deepened a political deadlock and led to intermittent violence in the country. In April, 2012, 20 people were injured in clashes with police during an opposition protest. In another such incident in December 2011, one person died and a number were injured.

The parliamentary election, slated for May 12, is intended to be the last stage in the mineral-rich West African nation's transition to civilian rule after a military coup in 2008.

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