Gunfire erupted near several police installations across Ivory Coast’s main city Abidjan late on Wednesday, witnesses and a police source said, in what appeared to be a renewed bout of insecurity following months of military mutinies.
Shooting broke out at around 9.30 p.m. (2130 GMT) in the Cocody neighborhood near the national police and gendarmes academies and lasted for around an hour, according to one Reuters witness.
A second Reuters reporter later heard sustained gunfire near the base of the police anti-riot brigade in the Yopougon neighborhood in northern Abidjan.
A local resident also said shooting broke near a police station in another part of Yopougon.
“On the radio in the station they were talking about an attack a bit all over the place, including the police academy as well as Angre and Attoban (neighborhoods),” a police officer told Reuters, asking not to be named.
The unrest erupted just hours after President Alassane Ouattara dismissed his defense minister and replaced him with the minister of the interior.
The move was seen as an attempt to put a stop to successive waves of armed uprisings launched by members of the security forces demanding bonus payments.
Gunfire erupts near police bases in Abidjan, Ivory Coast