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Sankara trial resumes after 3-week hiatus

People attend the opening of the trial of the alleged perpetrators of the assassination of Thomas Sankara in Ouagadougou, on October 11, 2021.   -  
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Burkina Faso

The trial for the October 1987 assassination of former Burkinabe President Sankara and his colleagues resumed, on Tuesday, after the Constitutional Council rejected a defense petition.

The trial of 14 men for the October 1987 assassination of Burkinabe President Thomas Sankara resumed on Tuesday.

In the Ouaga 2000 venue serving as court, it was time for the speeches for the defense. The lawyer assisting the former medical officer charged with forging Sankara’s death certificate, pleaded for acquittal. 2 other defendant’s lawyers also pleaded for their clients to be acquitted. Citing the 34-year time lapse between the trial and the acts alleged against the accused, they put forward a statute of limitations and a lack of witnesses.

The Sankara trial was suspended in early March after the defense petitioned the Constitutional Council.

Citing the Council's approval of the military takeover by Colonel Damiba, the lawyers challenged the charges of crime against national security asking for them to be dropped on the basis of an exception of unconstitutionality.

However, the Council rejected their petition on Friday.

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