Burkina protests target presid

Burkina Faso’s President Roch Marc Christian Kabore gives a speech during the 75th anniversary celebrations of The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) at UNESCO headquarters in Paris on 12 November 2021. Photo: Julien De Rosa / POOL / AFP

Burkina protests target president after jihadist attack

Burkina Faso’s opposition last week demanded “urgent measures” amid the deterioration of the country’s security situation

Burkina protests target presid

Burkina Faso’s President Roch Marc Christian Kabore gives a speech during the 75th anniversary celebrations of The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) at UNESCO headquarters in Paris on 12 November 2021. Photo: Julien De Rosa / POOL / AFP

Hundreds protested in the capital of Burkina Faso on Tuesday, demanding the government resign after a jihadist attack killed at least 32 people in the conflict-torn north of the African nation.

Sunday’s pre-dawn attack was one of the deadliest to hit the security forces since jihadist violence erupted six years ago and highlighted frustration at the inability of the government to control the violence.

BURKINA FASO PROTESTS CALL OUT GOVERNMENT 

“We must call out leaders’ inaction while the people bend a little more every day under the terrorists’ yoke,” Dieudonne Zagre, a 34-year-old teacher, said at the protest in Ouagadougou. 

“When you’re powerless in a situation, you resign. Enough is enough!”

CONTINUING JIHADIST CONFLICT IN BURKINA FASO 

Armed organisations linked to Al-Qaeda and the so-called Islamic State group kill military personnel and civilians virtually every week, particularly in Burkina Faso’s northern and eastern regions bordering Mali and Niger.

The conflict, which can overlap with tensions between religious and ethnic groups, has killed 2 000 people and forced a further 1.4 million to flee their homes.

DAYS OF MOURNING 

Seven police officers were also killed in a separate attack in Alkoma in northeastern Burkina Faso on Friday.

Three days of national mourning have been declared from Tuesday to Thursday.

READ: Suspected jihadists kill at least 20 in Burkina Faso

LET’S SAVE BURKINA FASO SOLUTION 

“After six years of floundering, President Roch Marc Kabore has shown his limits,” said Mohamed Koumsongo of civil society group Let’s Save Burkina Faso, which organised the protest.

“Even if the president leaving isn’t the solution, it’s the start of the solution.”

GOVERNMENT ‘INABILITY TO END TERRORIST ATTACKS 

After gathering in the centre of  Ouagadougou, the protesters paraded behind a wide black banner bearing the words “Let’s save Burkina Faso”.

A security cordon stopped the protesters as they approached the government’s headquarters demanding the executive’s resignation for its “inability to end terrorist attacks”.

CALLS FOR HEAD OF STATE RESIGNATION 

Protests also took place in other locations, including Burkina Faso’s second city Bobo-Dioulasso and Dori, the main town in the Sahel region, which frequently suffers attacks.

Burkina Faso’s opposition last week demanded “urgent measures” amid the deterioration of the country’s security situation and threatened to take to the streets to demand the head of state’s immediate resignation.

© Agence France-Presse