Ex soldiers of Ivory Coast have mutinied in three cities of the country, with the possibility of unrest in the Western African country.
Though they are yet to state their reasons, the country’s defense minister,
Alain-Richard Donwahi, said on Friday they were demanding salary increases and the payment of bonuses.
The unrest began in Bouake, the country’s second-largest city and onetime rebel stronghold, where heavy weapons fire was heard in the streets before spreading to two other major urban centres of Daloa and Korhogo.
Gunfire also reportedly erupted at a military camp in the western town of Daloa on Friday.
According to Al Jazeera, regular soldiers have now joined the ranks of rebel soldiers to take control of Bouake, after they seized weapons from police stations on Thursday night and took up positions at entry points into the city.
Reporting for the news outlet, Nicolas Haque says,”These are former soldiers that were part of an ECOWAS force trying to maintain peace in Liberia … Then they returned back to Ivory Coast where there was also a civil war and played a role to maintain peace and order in the country”.
“Now they are saying they weren’t paid for their services,” he adds.