Parliament Fires More Than 6,000 Police
DAKAR, Senegal (AP) _ The National Assembly voted Wednesday to dismiss more than 6,000 members of the nearly 8,000-strong national police force because of an illegal strike which triggered confrontations and vandalism this week.
President Abdou Diouf on Tuesday fired Interior Minister Ibrahima Wone and suspended the police force, responding to the strike which occurred that began Monday.
Earlier Tuesday, the Cabinet fired Director of State Security Amsata Sall.
″These measures must serve as examples to safeguard the republican order and at the same time permit us to safeguard the respectability of the police,″ newly appointed Interior Minister Jean Collin said after the assembly decision.
Among the 6,265 police fired were 94 police chiefs and 383 inspectors, officials said.
Police went on strike to protest the conviction Friday of seven policemen on charges of torturing and beating a prisoner to death in 1983.
About 50 striking policemen, encircled by a large civilian crowd, faced off Tuesday against heavily armed soldiers in Dakar’s central plaza.
After several altercations between individual police and soldiers, the soldiers fired several tear gas canisters to control the situation.
Authorities reported scattered strike-related vandalism around the country.
The situation was reported calm Wednesday with soldiers guarding public buildings, manning police stations and handling traffic. Senegalese law forbids police from unionizing or striking.