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Fuel protests gripping more than 90 countries

Fuel protests gripping more than 90 countries

Protesters in Ecuador hit the streets over the rise in cost of livingIMAGE SOURCE,GETTY IMAGES
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Protesters in Ecuador hit the streets over the rise in the cost of living

High costs of living are driving people to protest in the streets against crippling prices. The BBC has mapped all reported demonstrations over fuel since January 2021, revealing a huge increase in protests this year.

Fuel costs affect many aspects of daily life – personal travel, transportation of goods, energy for electricity and heating.

Around the world demonstrators have called for change. They’ve demanded that petrol be made more affordable or available at all.

They’ve sat in peaceful protests and they’ve attacked governments.

Some have paid an even higher price.

Fights over fuel

16-year-old Khadija Bah was standing on her family’s front porch when she was shot.

For days, Khadija had been watching growing crowds of demonstrators rally, gathering only metres from her house on the east side of Sierra Leone’s capital, Freetown.

But on 10 August, the protests turned violent. As armed police clashed with protesters, a stray bullet hit Khadjia. She sank to the ground and died almost immediately.

Her mother, Maria Sesay, is still struggling to come to terms with the death of her daughter. A student at the local secondary school, Khadija’s dream was one day to become a nurse.

Khadija's parents, Maria (L) and Abdul (R)
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Khadija’s parents, Maria (L) and Abdul (R)

“I’m so sad,” her mother says. “Up until now, I have struggled so hard to raise my daughter. But now she is dead. I’m in so much pain.”

Violence like this has not been witnessed in this small west African nation for years. This time, it was sparked by record-breaking fuel prices.

In the month of August, violent clashes in the capital killed 25 people, including five police officers.

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