News / Africa

Pre-Election Clashes Kill 1 in Guinea, Injure 51

VOA News
At least one person has been killed and more than 50 others injured during campaign clashes in the West African nation of Guinea.

The government says a police trainee was shot dead Monday and two others were injured while clearing roadblocks in the capital, Conakry.  In addition, 49 people sustained minor injuries during clashes between supporters of rival political parties.

In a statement Monday, the government called on political parties to get their supporters to exercise restraint and refrain from violence.

On Saturday, the U.N. special envoy announced that the parliamentary elections that were scheduled for Tuesday would be postponed until September 28 to address concerns raised by the opposition party over voter lists and other preparations.

Guinea's parliamentary elections have been postponed repeatedly since initially being scheduled for December 2011.  

They are seen as the final step in Guinea’s transition from military dictatorship to civilian rule.  Former opposition leader Alpha Conde of the Malinke ethnic group won a close presidential election in 2010.

Tensions between the Malinke and Peul ethnic groups led to rioting in the capital, Conakry, last year.  This year has seen repeated protests from the opposition, which is made up primarily of members of the Peul.

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