Burkina Faso president detained by soldiers

24 Jan, 2022 - 11:01 0 Views
Burkina Faso president detained by soldiers A mutinous soldier fires into the air at the Bobo interchange in Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou Sunday Jan. 23, 2022. (Sophie Garcia/AP)

The Chronicle

Mutinous soldiers have detained the president of Burkina Faso after gunfire erupted at military bases across the West African nation, detaining the third head of state in this region in the last eight months, according to a Western official in the country and local media reports.

Authorities initially denied that President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré had been forced into military custody, asserting the situation was calm even as soldiers battled for control of several barracks. Then the mutineers reached the presidential palace late Sunday, Reuters reported, and Kaboré was physically removed from office less than 24 hours after the uprising began, said the Western official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation.

The apparent takeover followed hundreds of people marching the streets of the capital, Ouagadougou, demanding the resignation of Kaboré, who has been in power since 2015.

During his tenure, militants linked to the Islamic State and al-Qaeda have upended life in the nation of 21 million, rendering much of the countryside ungovernable and driving at least 1.4 million people from their homes. More than 2,000 Burkinabes have died in the violence.

The power grab in Burkina Faso comes after special forces toppled the president of neighbouring Guinea in September and military officers ousted the interim leader of Mali last May.

As video captured shots ringing out in the capital Sunday, protesters trashed the headquarters of Kaboré’s ruling party. Authorities implemented a curfew and ordered schools to shutter.

Washington Post

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