Protests over teachers' strike turn deadly in Guinea

At least five people killed and 30 wounded in Conakry demonstrations sparked by a teachers' strike, the government says.

    At least five people have been killed in Guinea's capital, Conakry, in protests sparked by a teachers' strike, according to the government, reviving labour tensions in a country where previous strikes have led to dozens of deaths.

    Guinea's main teachers' unions launched the strike on February 1 to protest at the government's decision to dismiss or cut the salaries of many junior teachers after the latest civil service exams.

    Many of their pupils have taken to the streets in recent days to support them.

    Beginning early on Monday morning, unidentified assailants attacked a police station and demonstrators clashed with security forces in several districts of Conakry, witnesses told the Reuters news agency.

    "By midday, these demonstrations had unfortunately caused the deaths of at least five people," the government said in a statement, calling the protest "illegal and forbidden".

    The statement added that 30 people had been injured, including members of the security forces, and 12 arrested.

    Demand for higher salaries

    The two largest teacher trade unions have been on strike for weeks, demanding higher salaries and the resumption of work by contracted teachers, who are not full-time. The government, they say, is not meeting their demands.

    The unions said their strike will continue until a pay rise of between 7.5 to 10.3 percent is met.

    Later on Monday, the government said a deal had been struck to end the teachers' strike but that could not be immediately confirmed.

    General strikes about 10 years ago caused major disruptions in Guinea, which has around a third of the world's reserves of bauxite, used to make aluminium.

    The subsequent crackdown led by security forces led to the deaths of 135 people.

    SOURCE: News agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, a 23-year-old student helped colour the country's identity.