Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Nationwide Protests on November 16-18

Several Togolese opposition political parties have called for protests on November 16, 17, and 18.

Three simultaneous protest routes are expected to affect areas of central, northern, and northeastern Lomé. Marches are expected to begin sometime in the morning. All three routes will converge later in the day at the Sancta Maria Hotel, at the eastern edge of Boulevard 13 Janvier (Boulevard Circulaire).

Major traffic disruptions are likely in Lomé, and public bus and private taxi services may be interrupted. The U.S. Embassy will observe normal working hours on November 16 and 17.

Although the Embassy is not presently aware of specific plans for protests in the rest of the country, the opposition has also called for demonstrations in other cities.

Many protesters and security force members have been injured, and some killed, during the current cycle of demonstrations, which began in August 2017. Security forces have used excessive force to disperse crowds.

Police often use tear gas to disperse demonstrations that cause traffic disruptions in city centers and along National Route 1 and arrest demonstrators. Authorities have in the past interrupted internet and cellular data services, making communications difficult and less predictable.

We recommend:

  • Deferring discretionary‎ travel in affected areas of the country on November 16-18;
  • Having flexible travel plans and rescheduling long- distance travel along National Route 1 until a later date if possible;
  • Having alternate communications plans that do not rely solely on cellular telephone and cellular data networks;
  • Exercising caution and being aware of your surroundings;
  • Monitoring media and local news;
  • Reporting specific safety concerns to local law enforcement authorities;
  • Enrolling in the Smart Traveler-Enrollment Program (STEP).

For further information: