A coalition of 14 civil society organizations under the leadership of the Burkinabè Movement for Human Rights and Human Rights Peoples (MBDHP) are planning to march in Ouagadougou beginning at 9:00 (local time) on Wednesday, October 31. The march will begin from the Place de la Nation, commemorating the fourth anniversary of the popular uprising that overthrew former President Blaise Compaoré. The demonstration has reportedly been organized to demand justice for those killed during the 2014 popular uprising and as a resistance to the putsch of September 2015. A heightened security presence and localized traffic disruptions are to be expected along the march route. Incidents of related civil unrest are possible in Ouagadougou and other neighboring areas over the coming weeks. Clashes between demonstrators and security forces cannot be ruled out.
The mobilization is also aimed at demanding decent housing for the working class, opposing perceived "savage" privatization, and combating the criminalization and repression of the struggles of worker unions and youth organizations to redouble the momentum of the 2014 popular uprising and its objectives.
In October 2014, demonstrators surged through the streets of Ouagadougou to protest President Blaise Compaoré's plans of extending his 27 years in office. After continued protests, a bill that would have given Compaoré another three terms in office was dropped. Though on the surface they were protesting Compaoré's extended term in office, corruption, inequality, and a lack of democracy were some of the other deeper issues stirring violent protests. Security forces and protesters clashed in Ouagadougou during an October 28 rally when the situation reached a crisis point. On October 30, protesters stormed the state television channel and set fire to the country's parliament. The military sided with the protesters, and on October 30, an interim transitional government aimed at moving toward real constitutional rule was announced. By the morning of October 31, Compaoré had resigned.
A coup in September 2015 launched by members of the Regiment of Presidential Security (RSP) led to leading ministers being detained and violent clashes on the streets of Ouagadougou. Members of RSP detained Michel Kafando, the transitional President of Burkina Faso from 2014 to 2015. Kafando was eventually returned to power following emergency talks with the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), led by Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari.
Individuals present in Ouagadougou are advised to monitor developments to the situation, anticipate related transportation disruptions, avoid protests and public gatherings as a precaution, and adhere to any instructions issued by local authorities.
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