Alioune Tine, a human rights defender, also political activist who was arrested and detained for organizing a demonstration against the third term bid of President Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal, was on January 30, 2012 released after a 72-hour detention, without charge. The Media Foundation for West Africa’s (MFWA) correspondent reported that Tine was picked-up by officials of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Senegalese Police at about 1700GMT on January 28, 2012, a day after he led the demonstration.
Tine, is the coordinator of the June 23 Movement, a coalition of civil society and opposition political parties protests, formed last year to oppose President Abdoulaye Wade’s plans to run for a third term. Although, he was not charged, he was reportedly grilled for a long time on issues relating to the demonstration.
The January 27 protest was one of the series of protest against President Wade’s controversial third term. It began in June 2011 when he started series of his constitutional amendments to realise his ambition. This latest protest was to condemn the Constitutional Council for clearing fourteen candidates including President Wade to contest the February 26 elections.
One of the disqualified aspirants,Youssou Ndour, an international pop star and Grammy-award winning singer, was prevented from visiting Tine by the police.
The correspondent said journalists of Agence France Presse (AFP) and privately-owned Populaire newspaper and some members of M23 Movement were also assaulted by the security forces in the early hours of that day at the Oblisque Square in Dakar.
This is not the first time that Tine, Secretary- General of Rencontre africaine pour la défense des droits de l’homme(RADDHO), a prominent Dakar-based human rights NGO, had been attacked over President Wade’s third term bid. In June 2011, he was violently assaulted by militants of the ruling Parti Démocratique Sénégalais (PDS) after a controversial constitutional amendment by President Wade. Tine was injured and hospitalized for a few days.
The correspondent said Tine is not perturbed about the alleged “inhuman conditions” he suffered while in detention and had vowed to continue with the struggle until President Wade rescinds his decision.
On January 30, two people were killed in similar protests in the north of the country, but despite this the protesters plan to continue.
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