Leader of Comoros Seeks New Term After Rules Changed

(Bloomberg) -- Comoros President Azali Assoumani is among 20 candidates registered for March 24 elections after changes to the Indian Ocean archipelago’s constitution allowed him to run again.

“The final list of candidates retained by the Supreme Court should be official before Feb. 10,” electoral commissioner Soilihi Abdallah said by phone from Moroni, the capital.

Assoumani won a constitutional referendum in July that extended presidential term limits and abolished the system of rotating power between the three main islands, which are located east of Mozambique.

Comoros has experienced rising political tensions and violent unrest since the referendum, which opposition parties said was illegal because Assoumani suspended the Constitutional Court prior to the poll. A second-round vote will take place on April 21 if no candidate secures more than 50 percent of the ballots cast.

A country of about 800,000 people, Comoros has had more than 20 coups or attempts at seizing power since it gained independence from France in 1975.

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