According to local and medical sources told to AFP, fourteen people were murdered and 28 others were injured on Monday in Madagascar as a result of gendarmes’ opening fire on enraged citizens who were protesting a questionable kidnapping case. Jean Brunelle Razafintsiandraofa, a member of parliament for the eastern district of Ikongo, where the incident happened, said that the gendarmes had opened fire on the crowd.
Tango Oscar Toky, the chief physician at the nearby hospital, stated that there were nine people who passed away at the scene. In addition, out of the 33 people who were injured and brought to the hospital that morning, five of them passed away while they were being treated there. In the vicinity of 08:00 local time (GMT), shots were fired in Ikongo. The disappearance of an albino youngster a week ago has left the nearby community in a state of shock. The local authorities are looking into the possibility that the child was abducted.
On this huge island in the Indian Ocean, those who have albinism are frequently the targets of violent crime. According to the United Nations, there have been more than a dozen homicides, kidnappings, and attacks that have been reported during the past two years. The gendarmes have taken into custody a total of four individuals at this time. On the other hand, the people who live there are set on running their own justice system.
According to Razafintsiandraofa, they rushed to the gendarmerie barracks first thing in the morning and demanded that the four suspects be turned over to them. At least 500 people are said to have been present, some of whom were armed with “white weapons” and “machetes,” according to a source from the gendarmerie.
According to the source, there were discussions leading up to the negotiations that the villagers demanded take place. The gendarmes eventually came to the conclusion that the best way to disperse the gathering was to fire a few bullets into the air and then hurl smoke bombs at them. On the other hand, the locals never stopped trying to break into the barracks using whatever means necessary. The same source stated, “We had no choice but to protect ourselves.” Therefore, it is clear that this was necessary.
Civil society in Madagascar often blames the country’s police force for different violations of human rights, even though these cases rarely lead to criminal charges.