Three killed in Ivorian clash over military bonus
A GROUP of mutinous soldiers in the Ivory Coast clashed with security forces in the northern city of Korhogo, a day after talks with military commanders over bonuses deadlocked.
The conflict on Saturday was preceded by shots fired into the air by members of the army group, 2600, in barracks at the capital Abidjan, and Korhogo, to protest military leaders, saying they won’t be paid bonuses due to unavailability of funds.
The situation is “under control and calm”, Minister of Defence Alain Donwahi said. Three soldiers died and two members of security forces were wounded, according to an Abidjan-based news website.
Ivory Coast soldiers have mutinied several times this year as they demand to be paid for supporting President Alassane Ouattara in a decade-long conflict that brought him to power in 2011. The rebel soldiers, who became part of the national army the same year, want to be paid bonuses just like other members of the military.
“We are claiming bonuses (like) our colleagues who got 12 million CFA francs,” Corporal Moussa Bamba, a member of 2600, said. “Yesterday, our talks with army commanders failed. They told us government has no more funds. We were angry.”
Gunmen dressed in army uniforms attacked a police station at Abobo, in the northern suburb of Abidjan earlier on Saturday.
It is unclear whether the attacks were linked with the mutineers. Bloomberg