2 civilians killed in Niger clashes

2011-12-08 18:02
Niamey - A teenager and a woman were killed during clashes this week between demonstrators and police in Zinder, Niger's second-largest city in the east, the government announced late Wednesday.

The government spokesperson, Justice Minister Marou Amadou, said that "unhappy events in Zinder on December 6 and 7 led to the intervention of the security forces" and the two deaths.

According to medical sources, about a dozen people were wounded and admitted to hospital.

"The director of the Zinder police has been suspended and the police inspector suspected in the death of the (woman) has been arrested," Amadou added, announcing the opening of an inquiry.

The clashes took place around a court house where opposition politician Aboubacar Mahamadou was on trial for "preparing protest demonstrations" on November 28 against President Mahamadou Issoufou, who had come to Zinder to open an oil refinery.

Mahamadou was acquitted.

The teenager died on Tuesday in hospital following head trauma, medical sources said, and the woman died of wounds received on Wednesday from a stray bullet that hit her while she was at her house, according to media reports.

The teenager's death on Wednesday drew thousands of youths and angry residents out on to the streets, where they sacked public buildings and burned down a police station, according to private radio Anfani.

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Read more on:    mahamadou issoufou  |  niger  |  west africa

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