Political opposition supporters clashed with security forces in Gagnoa (Goh Region) on Friday, October 30, as protesters gathered outside the Independent Electoral Commission facility in the city to protest against President Alassane Quattara's plan to run for a third term in office. Reports indicate that makeshift barricades were also erected on roads surrounding the city, leading to widespread overland disruption. No details of casualties or arrests linked to the demonstrations were immediately available.
Heightened security measures should be anticipated in the vicinity of any demonstrations, particularly as the ban on gatherings remains in place amid coronavirus disease (COVID-19) restrictions. Localized disruptions are likely to continue and further demonstrations are possible in the near term. Further violence between protesters and security forces are also likely.
President Alassane Ouattara has announced that he would be standing for a third term in presidential elections scheduled to be held on October 31. The president had been expected to stand down at the end of his current term, but the sudden death of his expected successor, Prime Minister Amadou Gon Coulibaly, on July 8 left the ruling RHDP coalition with no clear candidate going into the polls. However, Ouattara's decision to stand again has been opposed by the opposition and civil society groups. Unrest linked to the issue has resulted in several fatalities and dozens of arrests.
Those in Cote d'Ivoire are advised to monitor developments and remain apprised of the political situation, avoid all public demonstrations and political gatherings as a precaution, avoid discussing sensitive political topics in public or on social media, and heed all instructions issued by the local authorities.
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