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At least 1 dead in clashes at refugee camp in Ghana

By Israel Laryea, For CNN
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Police fire tear gas, bullets
  • Two refugees arrested

Accra, Ghana (CNN) -- At least one person has been confirmed dead in violence that broke out Sunday morning at a refugee camp in Ghana.

An unknown number of people were injured as police fired tear gas and bullets to control angry rock-throwing residents.

The residents were swearing in new leaders without the approval of the authorities. According to one eyewitness, the police surrounded the hall where the ceremony was set to take place and arrested two, including the leader who was about to be sworn in.

"As the police drove off with the two, some residents pelted the convoy and the police responded with gun shots and tear gas," the eyewitness said.

A spokesman for the police, however, told CNN they were called in to quell disturbances between two rival factions both claiming to be the legitimate leaders. One faction was trying to install a new leader in place of the existing leadership, spokesman Kwesi Ofori said.

Thirty people were arrested, he said. Eyewitnesses, however, say as many as 54 were arrested.

The Buduburam Refugee Camp has been home to refugees who fled the civil war in Liberia more than two decades ago. The camp currently hosts 15,000 to 18,000 refugees from Liberia and Sierra Leone as well as nationals from other West African countries, many of whom have settled into what has now become a town.

 
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