Clashes between police and supporters of Senegalese opposition leader Ousmane Sonko left nine people dead, the government said Friday, with authorities issuing a blanket ban on the use of several social media platforms in the aftermath of the violence, APA reports citing Independent.
The deaths occurred mainly in the capital, Dakar, and Ziguinchor in the south, where Sonko is mayor, Interior Minister Antoine Felix Abdoulaye Diome said in a statement.
Some social media sites used by demonstrators to incite violence, such as Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter have been suspended, he said.
“The state of Senegal has taken every measure to guarantee the safety of people and property. We are going to reinforce security everywhere in the country,” Diome said.
Sonko was convicted Thursday of corrupting youth but acquitted on charges of raping a woman who worked at a massage parlor and making death threats against her. The court sentenced Sonko to two years in prison. He didn't attend his trial in Dakar, and was judged in absentia. His lawyer said a warrant hadn't been issued yet for the politician’s arrest.