Lome - Togolese security forces fired tear gas on
Wednesday to break up a protest in the capital for the second day
running, leading some demonstrators to throw rocks and set tyres alight
in the streets.
A couple of thousand people had gathered in Lome
for the second of a planned three days of protests organised by Let's
Save Togo, a coalition of civil society and opposition groups, ahead of
parliamentary elections expected in October.
Security forces fired tear gas not long after Wednesday's march began.
Tuesday, authorities also fired tear gas to break up a march of several
thousand people, with protest organisers saying a number of people had
been hurt and detained.
The government said 10 people, including a police officer, were slightly injured Tuesday.
week, the west African nation's government banned street demonstrations
in commercial centres, setting up a showdown with the coalition, which
had already announced the protests.
The government says
commercial centres were made off-limits because security and public
order were difficult to maintain in such areas, but the opposition have
denounced the move as a bid to stifle critics.
Some of the
opposition are seeking a delay in the polls to let reforms take effect
first, while others also want changes to the electoral code passed by
parliament to be repealed on the grounds they were not made properly.
While the elections are expected to be held in October, no date has been set.
has been run by the same family for more than four decades. Gnassingbe
Eyadema ruled the country for 38 years with an iron fist until his death
Shortly after his death was announced, the military
installed his son Faure Gnassingbe as president. He has since won
elections in 2005 and 2010.