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Protester shot dead while chopping policemen in Guyana post-election violence

A protester at Cotton Tree Public Road, West Coast Berbice, was shot dead by police after he was seen chopping two other policemen who fled after their ammunition ran out while trying to disperse People’s Progressive Party (PPP) supporters angered at the declaration of unverified results for Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica).

“The ranks were then attacked by a group of men armed with cutlasses, wood, iron, etc. and were forced to discharge their weapons into the air to disperse the very hostile and aggressive crowd and after expending their ammunition the ranks including Sergeant Ibaran, Corporal Williams, Constable Grant, and Constable Fraser were forced to seek refuge in nearby yards.

“During that process, it was alleged that one of the protesters who was later identified as Seedat ‘Devon’ Hansraj, 18 years, unemployed, of Back Street, Cotton Tree Village, WCB, chopped Sgt Ibaran and Constable Fraser and as he was attempting to deal the latter another chop, was shot once by one of two ranks who arrived at the scene and witnessed their colleagues being attacked and wounded,” the Guyana Police Force said.

The incident occurred at about 7:40pm on Friday, March 6.

Police said Hansraj and the injured ranks — Sergeant Ibaran and Constable Fraser — along with Constable Grant who was reportedly assaulted by protesters, were rushed to the New Amsterdam Public Hospital where Hansraj was pronounced dead on arrival whilst the ranks received medical attention and admitted for care; their conditions are considered stable.

Enquiries revealed that shortly before the attack, an officer and other ranks cleared the Cotton Tree Public Road of protesters and debris, leaving Sergeant Ibaran with several ranks to maintain free passage along the corridor.

Police said the ranks were then attacked by a group of men armed with cutlasses, wood, iron, and other items and were forced to discharge their weapons into the air to disperse the very hostile and aggressive crowd.