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Sierra Leone: Police arrest many including army officers

Sierra Leone: Police arrest many including army officers
Police guard a roadblock in Freetown on September 19, 2014.   -  
Copyright © africanews
Michael Duff/AP

Sierra Leone

Sierra Leonean police claimed to have arrested "several" people, including army officers, who were planning violent attacks a year after deadly August 2022 riots that left more than 30 people dead.

"The security sector has been following intelligence regarding the activities of certain individuals, including senior military officers, working to undermine the peace and tranquility of the state," police said in a statement received Monday evening by AFP. 

It adds that the suspects planned to use the peaceful protests planned for next week "as a pretext to unleash violent attacks on state institutions and peaceful citizens".

Inflation and exasperation with the government provoked riots on August 10, 2022 which caused the death of 27 civilians and six police officers. Amnesty International said it collected testimony alleging "excessive use of force" and condemned internet restrictions.

Sierra Leone , a small West African state among the least developed in the world, held general elections on June 24. President Julius Maada Bio was re-elected for a second term in the first round, according to official results, which the opposition contests.

International observers noted "statistical inconsistencies" and condemned a "lack of transparency" in the counting of votes after the vote. The opposition refused to participate in any position of governance, both local and national and took the decision to boycott parliament.

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