UN Secretary-General warns Senegal

February 1, 2012
Riot police use tear gas to disperse protesters in Dakar, Senegal Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2012. Police opened fire with tear gas on demonstrators Tuesday, leaving at least one person dead in Senegal's capital where hundreds had gathered to protest a court ruling allowing the nation's elderly leader to run for another term.(AP Photo/Tanya Bindra)

DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon issued a warning to Senegal, saying in a statement from New York that he is concerned about the uptick of violence and urges its political parties to refrain from violence.

The normally quiet nation of Senegal has been rattled by protests since Friday when the country's constitutional court validated the candidacy of President Abdoulaye Wade, who is seeking a third term in next month's election. The constitution was revised in 2001 in order to impose a two-term limit.

Four people have been killed in the protests, including a policeman who was stoned to death by demonstrators.

Ban said authorities "must act in a manner that preserves and consolidates Senegal's democratic traditions."