Sierra Leone declares nationwide curfew after assault on army barracks in Freetown – JURIST

Sierra Leonean president Julius Maada Bio declared a nationwide curfew with fast impact on Sunday, a number of hours after a number of unidentified gunmen attacked the Army Barracks at Wilberforce within the capital Freetown within the morning.

In line with a statement launched by Sierra Leonean Minister of Data and Civic Training Mustapha Jambai Massaquoi, the attackers have been attempting to interrupt into the army armory at Wilberforce Barracks, however all of them have been rebuffed. The federal government assured the general public that state safety forces are in management, and residents are strongly suggested to remain indoors with the curfew in impact. President Bio said on nationwide tv that many of the leaders of the assault had been arrested and calm within the nation “had been restored.”

The assault follows the months-long social unrest throughout the nation after the June 2023 presidential election, which resulted in President Bio of the ruling Sierra Leone Folks’s Social gathering (SLPP) winning with a 56.17 p.c majority vote. Nonetheless, the outcome turned controversial as his primary competitor, Samura Kamara of the All Folks’s Congress (APC), who got here second with 41.16 p.c, rejected the outcome for lack of transparency and asked to provoke an intensive investigation into the electoral course of. The APC additionally accused the army of taking pictures reside ammunition and tear fuel at their workplace simply in the future after the election when APC workers and supporters have been sifting by way of vote information. Nonetheless, the EU Election Commentary Mission (EOM)’s final report launched on June 26 discovered the outcome credible regardless of the shortage of transparency and the violent incident.

The Financial Group of West African States (ECOWAS) launched a statement on Sunday, condemning the disturbances in Freetown and calling it an “unconditional change of Authorities.” Notably, the area is dealing with a surge in military coups and there have been six African nations taken over by juntas over the previous three years, together with Gabon and Niger in 2023.

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