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Senegal: Demonstration victims Families demand justice

Funeral of one of the victims of Senegal's street protests   -  
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JOHN WESSELS/AFP or licensors


The family of one of the victims of the protests earlier this month in Senegal wants justice.

Their son, Kadhim Ba, was killed on the same day political opposition leader Ousmane Sonko was convicted of “corrupting youth” and given a two-year prison sentence.

“I went to the dispensary (hospital) and found him on a stretcher. I arrived there; he was covered with a sheet. When I entered the room I lifted the sheet and I told him 'Khadim', his name. He didn't reply. Then I felt something, I started to cry. Then they rolled up the sheet and I saw a bullet hole in his chest. That's when I knew my son was gone. I was so moved, I cried a lot, really”, recounted Ibrahima Ba, father of Khadim Ba who was killed during the protests.

Several people were reported shot with live ammunition by men wearing civilian clothes who appeared to be fighting alongside the police, according to protesters and rights groups.

Seynabou Diop, mother of Khadim Ba, demands action from the authorities. 

"Find the person who killed him (her son, Ed.) and bring him to justice, is the only thing I want. They killed a person they don't know. By Allah, they don't know who they killed! The person who did this must be brought to justice. It is God's will (to take the life of Khadim, Ed.) but justice must be done", said the grieving mother.

According to Human Rights group, Amnesty International, the death toll is double compared to similar protests in 2021.

“The death toll has quite doubled compared to 2021 because of the response of the police and the authorities that not only responded violently with the police and the gendarmerie, but allowed private citizens to get involved in the repression", denounced Seydi Gassama, Executive Director of Amnesty International Senegal.

Violence flared during pro-Sonko demonstrations last month and this month.

Participants destroyed shops, gas stations, cars and buses lining the streets barricading roads and lighting tires on fire.

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