Accessibility links

Breaking News

Burkina Civilians Bloodied


FILE: The road between Bourzanga and Djibo in the Center-North region of Burkina Faso. 8.9.2022
FILE: The road between Bourzanga and Djibo in the Center-North region of Burkina Faso. 8.9.2022

UPDATED WITH DAMIBA REACTION: At least 35 civilians were killed and 37 injured in northern Burkina Faso on Monday when a vehicle in a convoy hit an improvised explosive device (IED), the interim government said in a statement.

The head of Burkina Faso's ruling junta Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba vowed Tuesday that his country would defeat armed groups, a day after a blast left dozens dead.

"This umpteenth cowardly and barbaric attack is proof that we must continue the fight against all those who reject the extended hand," Damiba said, as he paid tribute to the "memory of all the innocent victims".

"I firmly believe that we will defeat them, it's only a matter of time," he said, referring to armed groups.

The escorted supply convoy heading to the capital, Ouagadougou, hit the IED between the northern towns of Djibo and Bourzanga, an area where Islamist militants have escalated attacks on villages, police and military outposts since 2015.

"Escorts rapidly secured the perimeter and took measures to assist the victims," the military government said in a statement.

Insecurity has risen across West Africa's Sahel over the past decade as groups with links to al Qaeda and Islamic State have gained ground, killing thousands and displacing over a million people despite the presence of foreign troops and United Nations peacekeepers.

Frustrations about spiraling attacks spurred a military coup against Burkina Faso's ex-president Roch Kabore in January.

But levels of violence have remained high.

Nearly one in 10 people in Burkina Faso has been displaced by conflict and severe food insecurity has almost doubled compared to 2021 as fields and livestock are abandoned, according to the Norwegian Refugee Council.