Lesotho police, military in shoot-out

2014-09-19 12:02

Maseru – Police and military exchanged gunfire in Lesotho’s capital Maseru, the latest spasm of violence to rock Africa’s tiny mountain kingdom.

Maseru Police District Commissioner Mofokeng Kolo said today that the shooting occurred at 3am when soldiers suspiciously drove past the home of a police force commander, Khothatso Tsooana.

“If they were planning something, I’m not sure ... Soldiers came close, and the police on guard followed them” for about two kilometres.

“I don’t know yet who fired first,” he said, adding that there were no injuries as a result of the shoot-out.

On August 30 the tiny nation was rocked by a coup attempt that saw the prime minister flee to South Africa and the military attack several police stations, killing one officer and forcibly disarming police.

Police are seen as loyal to Prime Minister Tom Thabane but sections of the military are allied to his political foes.

The August violence was blamed on “renegade” Lesotho Defence Force commander Tlali Kamoli, who has refused to step down and has been blamed for a series of attacks on police and political rivals.

Kamoli – who is reportedly surrounded by a group of armed loyalists – faces accusations of mutiny and treason, but remains free.

Tensions heightened yesterday with the funeral of Sub-Inspector Mokheseng Ramahloko, the police officer killed on August 30, who was reportedly guarding the police armoury that army soldiers then raided.

About 2 000 police attended the emotional memorial service.

Southern Africa states have pressed Lesotho’s leaders to solve the crisis, but they remain deadlocked with Thabane saying he cannot meet demands to reopen parliament until Kamoli is brought under control.

The Southern African Development Community has called for early elections to be called and sent South African police to the country to protect Thabane and his allies.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/Sport

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.