SUR | May 2, 2023

Police station set ablaze during early morning riot in Suriname

/ Our Today

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A police station was destroyed by fire early Tuesday morning and at least ten trucks transporting wood were set ablaze as rioting took place in the village of Pikin Saron, an indigenous village of Kalina Amerindians in the Para District in Suriname.

Police have given no motive for the riot that broke out, at about 6:00 a.m. (local time), but said at least two police officers had sustained gunshot injuries.

The police public relations department said those injured were transported under police escort to the Academic Hospital in Paramaribo for medical treatment.

A joint police and soldier team has been sent to the area to restore order.

According to several media reports, gunmen had launched an attack on the checkpoint of Stichting Bosbeheer en Bostoezicht.


While the motive for the destruction of the Police Station is unclear, the Dutch-speaking has seen several riots since the start of the year.

In early February, hundreds of demonstrators stormed Suriname’s parliament, breaking windows and looting nearby businesses to protest high fuel and electricity prices in the South American nation.

Protesters in the capital, Paramaribo, overwhelmed police who had fired tear gas in an effort to control the crowd. It was not immediately clear if there were injuries in that particular riot.

Security forces stand guard outside parliament on the sidelines of an anti-government protest in Paramaribo, Suriname on Friday (March 24) 2023. Protesters are demanding that President Chan Santokhi resign.

The riot was a result of the Government ending the state subsidies for fuel and electricity on the recommendation of the International Monetary Fund. Demonstrators also were upset about inflation in the prices of other basic goods and the weakening of the Suriname dollar.

A month later, on March 24, hundreds of protesters gathered in Suriname’s capital to demand that the president resign.

Protestors accused the President, Chan Santokhi, of trying to postpone the 2025 general election, which can’t be organised until legislators amend an electoral law as required by a court ruling last year that aims to create a fairer voting system.


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