Burkina again bereaved by an attack that left at least 35 dead

At least 35 civilians were killed and 37 others injured on Monday when an artisanal device exploded as a supply convoy passed through northern Burkina Faso, a new deadly attack in this country regularly bereaved by jihadist violence. .

“One of the vehicles transporting civilians in the said convoy exploded on contact with an improvised explosive device. The provisional toll at 5:00 p.m. (GMT and local) reports 35 dead and 37 injured, all civilians,” said a statement from the governor of the Sahel region, Lieutenant-Colonel Rodolphe Sorgho.

These convoys, escorted by the army, supply towns in the north subject to a blockade by jihadist groups.

“Elements of the escort quickly secured the perimeter and took measures to provide assistance to the victims. The wounded were taken care of and the difficult cases evacuated to appropriate structures”, continues the press release which specifies that the convoy left the north of the country to go to the capital Ouagadougou.

“The supply convoy was made up of civilian drivers and traders,” a security source told AFP.

– “Traders and students” –

“There were several dozen vehicles, including trucks and public transport buses. The victims are mainly traders who were leaving to get supplies in Ouagadougou and students who were returning to the capital for the next school year”, told AFP a resident of Djibo who wishes to remain anonymous.

In early August, fifteen soldiers were killed on the same Djibo-Bourzanga axis in a double improvised explosive device attack.

In recent weeks, jihadist groups have destroyed with dynamite places located on the main axes leading to the two major cities in northern Burkina, Dori and Djibo, in an attempt to isolate them.

Burkina Faso – in particular the north and the east – is confronted like several of its neighbors with the violence of armed movements affiliated with Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group, which since 2015 have caused thousands of deaths and some two million displaced.

On January 24, soldiers took power in a putsch claiming to want to make security their priority.

Sunday evening, in a speech to the Nation delivered from the city of Dori (north-east), the president of the transition, Lieutenant-Colonel Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba had welcomed a “relative calm” in several localities.

The government claims to have intensified the “offensive actions” of the army and has also initiated a process of dialogue with certain armed groups, via religious and customary leaders.

This process allowed, according to Mr. Damiba, “several dozen young people” to lay down their arms.

However, attacks have remained numerous since the beginning of the year, such as the massacre in Seytenga (north) last June, where 86 civilians were killed.

Since last year, Burkina has become the epicenter of violence in the Sahel, with more deadly attacks than in Mali or Niger in 2021, according to the NGO Acled.

More than 40% of Burkina’s territory is outside state control, according to official figures.

Source: www.challenges.fr

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