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Guinean army forces patrol in the street in Conakry on March 22, 2020 during a constitutional referendum in the country

50 Deaths Recorded in Guinea's Protests Ahead of National Elections

Amnesty International has reported that 50 people have died in anti-government protests following President Alpha Conde's run for third presidential bid.

Guinea president Alpha Conde's run for third term has reportedly resulted in the death of 50 people ahead of planned national elections this month, Al Jazeera reports. An Amnesty International report has condemned the government's stance on non accountability for the reported deaths. The West African country has been ruled with an iron fist since last year since rising opposition against Conde.


Read: Zimbabwe Announces "Patriot Bill" Amidst Rising Human Rights Protests

Conde was a long-time oppositional leader before he was elected in 2010 and was reportedly seen as the people's hope. He was elected again in 2015, but shortly afterwards, he lost favour with his citizens especially when he indicated to run for a third term.

Political tensions have been steadily rising with increased incidences of violence towards protestors. Amnesty International reports that over 200 people have been injured, 70 imprisoned and 50 shot dead in anti-Conde protests since October last year. The government's callous actions have yet to be formally investigated or accounted for. Conde's authoritarianism contravenes Guinea's Constitution which allows freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.

National elections are set to take place on the 18th of October. Original elections in December 2018 were postponed due to political delay which led to the amendment of the Constitution and granted Conde the opportunity to run for a third term. Oppositional party leaders for National Front for the Defense of the Constitution (FNDC) had planned demonstrations for the 6th of October against him, but the 82-year-old Conde sent an army to siege the party leader's house.

Amnesty International conducted over 100 interviews and cites that even children were shot in the back, neck and even in the head. Fear of Conde is so entrenched that it is reported that even mortuaries do not accept bodies of people killed in anti-Conde protests. However, citizens are undeterred and protests continue. Power mongering is a thorn in Africa's side, Ivory Coast's president Alassane Outarra is also running for third term.

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