Security Message for U.S. Citizens: Nationwide Protests on November 7-9

Togolese opposition political parties have called for protests on November 7-9, 2017, beginning in the mornings.  Protests are planned for Lomé, Dapaong, Guerin-Kouka, Anié, Atakpamé, Notsé, Tsévie, Kpalimé, Kevé, Afagnan, Vogan and Tabligbo.

Planned marches in Lomé are expected to affect areas of central, northern, and northeastern parts of the city. Protest leaders announced three different march routes within Lomé, all ending near the Hotel Sancta Maria.  Route one will start in Bè and continue to Marché de Bè – Boulevard Félix Houphouët Boigny- Boulevard Circulaire.  Two other routes were announced with starting points in Atikoumé and établissement CCP situated on Boulevard de la Kara, respectively.  Both routes are expected to merge into a single march near Dekon.  These marches will continue down the western part of Boulevard Circulaire toward the Hotel Sancta Maria.  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 7-9.

Previously, demonstrations in interior cities, notably in Sokodé, frequently accompany calls for protests in Lomé.  Since August 19, protest-related clashes resulted in at least ten fatalities and a number of injuries.

Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  Avoid areas where demonstrations are taking place and exercise caution when in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

The Embassy advises that in the context of these demonstrations, unplanned protests may occur at any time.  Travelers may encounter snap checkpoints run by the authorities and improvised roadblocks established by protestors.

Police disperse unauthorized demonstrations that interfere with road traffic – particularly on National Route 1 – using nonlethal measures such as tear gas and by arresting some participants.  Authorities have occasionally interrupted internet and cellular data services, making communications difficult and unpredictable.

We recommend:

  • Having flexible travel plans and minimizing travel on November 7-9, 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: