Mongolia election win confirmed

Officials reject allegations of vote fraud that had triggered violent protests.

    Protesters ransacked the offices of the ruling MPRP party during Tuesday's violence [AFP]

    Ulan Bator was reported to be calm on Thursday, but with a tight security presence on the streets.

    Witnesses said police continued to keep the centre of the city largely sealed off although Mongolia's justice minister was quoted as saying soldiers would be ordered to return to barracks.

    "The situation has stabilised and there is no immediate danger of violence so armed forces have been removed from strategic positions and have been replaced by police," Tsend Munkh-Orgil told AFP.

    Tuesday's clashes saw thousands of rock-throwing protesters battle with police as they mobbed the headquarters of the ruling MPRP and set it on fire.

    The demonstrators also attacked the General Election Commission, demanding that officials resign.

    Call for calm

    Five people were reportedly killed in 
    Tuesday's violence [AFP]
    Police and troops imposed a 10pm to 8am curfew, and downtown streets were nearly deserted on Wednesday night.

    The president's nine-point state of emergency decree also allowed police to use force in dealing with demonstrators, who had reportedly also looted an art gallery and government buildings.

    Mongolia's national news agency Montsame said five people died in Tuesday's violence in which officers used tear gas, rubber bullets and water cannon to beat back rioters wielding bricks and iron rods.

    The report did not say how they died.

    There were 220 people injured in the unrest, including a Japanese reporter, Montsame added.

    A foreign ministry official said about 1,000 people had been detained.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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