Demo against girl’s brutal rape turns violent in Chad

Indian students of Saint Joseph Degree college participate during an anti-rape protest in Hyderabad on September 13, 2013 ©Noah Seelam (AFP/File)
Indian students of Saint Joseph Degree college participate during an anti-rape protest in Hyderabad on September 13, 2013 ©Noah Seelam (AFP/File)

Riot police violently shut down a protest on Monday by hundreds of young Chadians in the capital N’Djamena, after photographs of a girl who had allegedly been brutally gang-raped spread on social media.

One protester was reported to have been shot dead as police moved to disperse the demo with tear gas, a fellow demonstrator told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Police spokesman Colonel Paul Manga denied that any protesters had been killed and said two of the girl’s alleged rapists had been arrested.

Protesters said a girl, named as Zouhoura, was kidnapped last weekend and gang-raped by five young men from the families of senior officers.

The men then allegedly posted a video online showing the victim in tears. The video has since been removed.

On Monday morning, pupils from Zouhoura’s high school and other protesters gathered outside her home and marched to the court to demand compensation for the girl.

Singing the national anthem, they marched holding banners that read “Justice for Zouhoura” and “We are all Zouhoura, our dignity is being denied”.

“As we arrived not far from the court, police fired tear gas. They also used live bullets,” one protester told AFP.

“Then they chased us through the city, and at the Liberty High School one of us fell, hit by a bullet.”

Manga said the situation was “under control”, adding: “There were no victims, to my knowledge.”

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