April 2023 | Political demonstrations banned seven months before the election
On 31 March, Madagascar’s Interior Minister announced a ban on political demonstrations in open public places, ordering that they be limited to enclosed spaces. This ban comes seven months before the next presidential election and is seen by critics of the government as part of a broader crackdown on dissent. Current President Andry Rajoelina is widely expected to run for re-election, and the ban has been interpreted by opposition parties as favouring him. On 4 April, an opposition party (Malagasy Miara-Miainga - MMM) was denied permission to hold a rally at a small stadium in Imito. The MMM party challenged the denial of permission for the rally at an administrative court, which then referred the case to the High Constitutional Court. No ruling on the case had yet been issued by the end of April.
August 2022 | Police fire on crowd, killing 19
Violence broke out near Ikongo, Madagascar on 30 August, as a mob approached a gendarmes facility demanding that suspected kidnappers be handed over to them, possibly seeking to lynch the accused. The gendarmes had arrested several men suspected of kidnapping an albino child the week before. A large group of local people approached the gendarmes facility, allegedly bearing sticks and machetes. The gendarmes claimed that negotiations with the crowd failed, and that as the crowd sought to force their way into the facility, they opened fire in self-defence. In doing so, they killed 19 people and injured another 28.