Comoros: protests against the re-election of President Azali Assoumani continue

In the Comoros, the day was once again marked by clashes between demonstrators and the police, particularly in the capital Moroni, this Thursday, January 18.

The protest movement began the day before, following the announcement of the results of the presidential election on January 14.

Azali Assoumani was re-elected with 62.97% of the votes, and a participation rate of 16.30%.

But the opposition denounces “

a gross fraud

”, pointing to the gap between the 190,000 voters for the gubernatorial elections and the 55,000 for the presidential election, while the two ballots were coupled.

Listen - 01:31

A patrol in the streets of Moroni, the capital of the Comoros, after violence broke out leading to the promulgation of provisional results for the Presidential election.

© David Baché/RFI

By: RFI Follow


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With our special correspondent in Moroni,

David Baché

From 9 a.m. this morning of January 18, the detonations mixed with the rumblings of thunder.

It was pouring rain in Moroni but that did not deter the protesters.

Incidents took place in the districts of Coulée, Caltex, Pam, Hadoudja and Itsandra, very close to Moroni.

Many streets were blocked by barricades, including access routes to the capital of the


, such as Daché-Maviguni.

The demonstrators threw stones at the soldiers, gendarmes and police who responded with tear gas.

The day before, in the evening, the authorities announced the establishment of a nighttime curfew: from 7 p.m. in Moroni, from 10 p.m. in the rest of the country.

Today, the vast majority of businesses have kept their doors closed, which is already causing difficulties for residents.

The demonstrators met by RFI this Thursday morning assure that they do not want to stop, that they will continue until the elections are canceled, which they consider “


” by Azali Assoumani.

The demonstrators encountered are mainly young people, very angry.

We would like them to cancel, to go through a normal route

For one of them, there was no question of stopping: “

 We threw stones.

Comrades, even brothers, have all been arrested, until now, we have no news.

They, the power, believed that it was just going to happen like that, but until now, seeing that there is nothing, we say to ourselves: “No, no!


We are revolted.

If there is anything to be done, this is it.

We would have liked to participate in a peaceful demonstration, but they weren't going to leave us just like that.

We will continue.

We'll see what happens.

We would like them to cancel, to go through a normal route.

In any case, we are here, we are ready to fight back and everything, because we are fed up with this regime.


Older residents interviewed by RFI, although they refuse to throw stones, explain that the vast majority share this demand.

The Comorian government claims to have proof that the opposition, which has "

not digested its defeat

 ", is behind the riots.

What the opposition denies.

On Wednesday, the spokesperson for one of the presidential candidates was arrested, his party has not heard from him since.

According to several political sources, the African Union – of which the Comorian head of state Azali Assoumani is currently the current president, and whose observers had judged the vote to be generally “


” and “


” – initiated an attempt at mediation between the power and the opposition.

Read alsoPresidential election in the Comoros: the opposition calls on the international community after the re-election of Azali Assoumani


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  • Comoros

  • Comoros presidential election 2024

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