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21 Jan 2020 | 11:10 AM UTC

Guinea: Opposition protests reported in Conakry January 21 /update 2

Opposition protests reported across Conakry on January 21; heightened security presence and associated disruptions expected

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Event

Opposition demonstrations organized by the Front National pour la Défense de la Constitution (FNDC), and subsequent clashes between protesters and security forces have been reported across Conakry on Tuesday, January 21. Protest activity was reported at Bambeto traffic circle, Bellevue traffic circle, and on the T1 road between the autoroute and the Concasseur intersection. Protesters reportedly erected barricades, burned tires and vehicles, and threw rocks at security forces, and police have used tear gas to disperse protesters in some areas.

US diplomatic authorities announced that the US Embassy in Conakry will be operating with core staffing operations only on Tuesday due to the protests. The Embassy will remain open and the consular section will honor appointments for those individuals who are able to safely travel to the Embassy. 

Protests are expected to continue in Conakry and in urban centers across Guinea over the near term. A heightened security presence and transportation disruptions are to be expected in the vicinity of any demonstrations. Clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.

Context

Protests were suspended on January 15, to allow peaceful burial of the four people that were killed during nationwide protests held between January 13-15.

The FNDC has organized several opposition demonstrations since October 14, some of which have turned violent. Opposition members allege that President Condé, who has been in power since 2010, is positioning himself to change the constitution in order to allow him to run for a third presidential term in late 2020. President Condé publicly called for a constitutional referendum on December 19.

Advice

Individuals in Guinea are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all demonstrations as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.