Civil society organizations plan to hold nationwide protest marches on Thursday, December 21. The demonstrations are being held to protest against the government’s 2018 budget. In Niamey, demonstrators are expected to gather at Toumo Square. A heightened security presence and associated transportation disruptions should be expected in the vicinity of the rallies. Clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.
The 2018 budget has drawn controversy from sections of Nigerien society. It will create housing and inheritance taxes, raise taxes on commercial activities, and increase the price of water and electricity. On October 30, clashes broke out between police and demonstrators at protests against the 2018 budget in Niamey.
Niger frequently experiences violent demonstrations. Both large and small street demonstrations occur regularly, often near government buildings, university campuses, or public parks. Many demonstrations have involved rock throwing and tire burning, especially at key intersections in Niamey.
Individuals in Niger are advised to avoid all public gatherings as violence may flare up without warning.
As a reminder, many Western governments advise their citizens against nonessential travel to southern Niger (including the capital Niamey) as well as all travel to the north, areas along the Nigerian border, and the Diffa region (Lake Chad area) due to a high risk of terrorist activity. Visitors throughout the country should be on guard when visiting sites deemed particularly likely to be targeted in an attack (government installations, prominent hotels, etc.) and report any suspicious objects or behavior to the authorities.