At least 18 paramilitaries and seven civilians were injured in Sunday’s confrontation, the government said.

The electoral victory of Barrow in 2016 was celebrated as a new beginning for the small nation of West Africa. When he came to power, he said he would seek to call new elections after three years. Last year, however, some members of the coalition that supported him supported his tenure during the five years allowed in the constitution.

Some Gambians have formed a movement called Operation 3 years Jotna, which means that three years is enough.

On Sunday, the Gambia government banned the group, calling it a “subversive, violent and illegal movement,” according to a statement by spokesman Ebrima G. Sankareh.

The government said the movement never registered and is determined to illegally dismiss the constitutionally elected president.

The Barrow government also suspended two radio stations pending investigations into allegations that they were selling “incendiary messages and allowed their media to be used as platforms to incite violence” by encouraging Gambians to join the movement.

The Committee for the Protection of Journalists said it is investigating reports of arrested and assaulted journalists, along with radio closures.

“It is no longer the era of the dictator #YahyaJammeh. The authorities must protect the freedom of the press and the public’s right to know, “the group said on Twitter.

The repression occurs amid reports that former dictator Jammeh wants to return to Gambia.

On Saturday, hundreds of victims of his government demonstrated in the capital, Banjul, demanding justice for human rights abuses committed under his regime. Other marches earlier this month by Jammeh supporters called for his return to be allowed.

Gambian Minister of Justice Aboubacarr Tambadou has made it clear that Jammeh will face an accountability process if he enters the country.

Abdoulie John in Banjul, Gambia contributed.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, transmitted, rewritten or redistributed.

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