Sierra Leone Residents Take to the Streets Against High Cost of Living

Protests against price hikes in Sierra Leone, a country in West Africa, turned deadly as long-simmering economic grievances, exacerbated by the global food crisis, burst into street fights this week.

This week protests broke out against price hikes across  Sierra Leone which later escalated into riots. 

A police statement revealed that at least four police officers were murdered, while the information minister of Sierra Leone and many news sources claim that untold numbers of protestors also perished in the skirmishes.

Following a day of peace on Thursday, demonstrators demonstrated once more on Friday in Sierra Leone’s capital, Freetown, according to videos posted on social media. 

This time, police opened fire on the protesters with live ammunition, but it wasn’t clear how many were wounded.

Even though police have been accused of using excessive force while confronting protesters, Sierra Leone’s president Julius Maada Bio promised that “peaceful protesters will be properly safeguarded by law enforcement officers” in a television speech on Friday.

Bio offered his condolences to the families of the fallen cops and promised that those responsible for their killings would face justice, but he made no mention of the number of civilian casualties.

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