Somalia’s Opposition Calls for More Protests amid Ban on Gatherings

MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Somalia’s opposition presidential candidates have called for more anti-government protests in the capital, Mogadishu amid ban on gatherings due to COVID-19.

Chair of an alliance of opposition presidential candidates Sharif Sheikh Ahmed briefing local media on Monday, urged residents in the capital to gather for protest at Daljirka Dahson Square, an area very close to the residence of president Farmajo, whose term expired two weeks ago.

Sharif stressed that the opposition is seeking to make its voice heard through peaceful protests and accused the federal government of attempting to assassinate key opposition figures including former prime minister Hassan Ali Khaire during a foiled demonstration last week.

It comes days after Somali special forces raided a hotel compound where former presidents Sharif Sheikh Ahmed and Hassan Sheikh Mohamud stayed to attend a peaceful demonstration scheduled to be held on Friday last week.

Hours later, troops used heavy weapons and dispersed a group of protesters including senior opposition leaders, who narrowly escaped indiscriminate shooting by security forces.

Heavily armed troops have been deployed to Daljirka Dahson shortly after the opposition’s announcement.

It’s unclear how the opposition will be able to hold anti-government march without being broken up despite government ban on gatherings, which has been in place since last week.

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