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Burkina Faso: nearly 40 dead in 2 jihadist attacks

Burkina Faso: nearly 40 dead in 2 jihadist attacks
Police officers in Ouagadougou, July 3, 2021   -  
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Burkina Faso

About 40 people, including army auxiliaries, were killed last weekend in western Burkina Faso, during two attacks by suspected jihadists, security and local sources told AFP on Tuesday.

On Saturday, "a secure convoy" was "the target of an attack by armed men" near Bourasso, informs a press release from the governorate of the Boucle du Mouhoun region, near Mali.

"This attack caused the death of about twenty people, mainly VDP (Volunteers for the defense of the homeland, civilian auxiliaries of the army)," said a local official who requested anonymity.

The governorate of Boucle du Mouhoun, which does not mention any deaths, mentions for its part "18 combatants wounded" and "currently supported".

Confirming the attack, a security source said that "air support deployed after the ambush detected and neutralized around thirty terrorists", northeast of Bourassa.

On Sunday, "another group (of presumed jihadists) attacked the populations of Ouakara, still in the Boucle du Mouhoun region, causing innocent victims among the inhabitants", continued this same source, specifying that " operations are underway to secure the populations".

"We recorded about twenty people killed by the attackers who burst into the village of Ouakara", located about 100 km from Bourasso, a resident told AFP, adding that "the balance sheet is provisional".

"Since yesterday (Monday), several people have left the village to go to Nouna or Dédougou, because the terrorists gave a 72-hour ultimatum to empty the village", indicated this resident.

In recent weeks, violent attacks have multiplied in the region of Boucle du Mouhoun, bordering Mali.

Burkina, the scene of two military coups in 2022, has been caught since 2015 in a spiral of jihadist violence that appeared in Mali and Niger a few years earlier and which has spread beyond their borders.

The violence over the past seven years has killed more than 10,000 civilians and soldiers, according to NGOs, and more than two million internally displaced persons.

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