Hundreds flee to Benin after Togo riots - police

from Reuters - Thomson Reuters Foundation
Published on 27 Apr 2005
COTONOU, April 27 (Reuters) - Hundreds of people have fled from southern Togo into neighbouring Benin after youths and security forces clashed in the town of Aneho, Togolese residents and a police official in Benin said on Wednesday.

The violence came after the son of Togo's former authoritarian ruler was declared the winner of a weekend presidential election -- triggering riots in the capital Lome in which at least 10 people have already been killed.

The police official in Benin, who did not want to be named, said around 600 people had already crossed the border.

The United Nations refugee agency UNHCR in Cotonou said people were still arriving on Wednesday although they did not have exact numbers.

The head of a private radio station in Aneho, 45 km (28 miles) from Lome, said opposition youths attacked the police headquarters and mayor's house after the election victory of Faure Gnassingbe, son of former president Gnassingbe Eyadema.

"The security forces retaliated and several people were injured by bullets and people were also killed but I don't know how many because I had to cross the frontier after the security forces wrecked my radio station," the station owner said. (Additional reporting by John Zodzi)

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