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Burkina Faso rejects Human Rights Watch’s report on village massacre as ‘baseless’

Burkina Faso rejects Human Rights Watch’s report on village massacre as ‘baseless’
A soldier walks near the rear of the Army Headquarters in central Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, Friday March 2, 2018.   -  
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Ludivine Laniepce/Copyright 2018 The Associated Press

Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso has denied claims that its soldiers killed 223 people in February attacks. Human Rights Watch accused the army of killing 179 in Soro and 44 in Nondin, including 56 children. The government calls these claims "baseless."

"We strongly reject and condemn such baseless accusations," said Communications Minister Rimtalba Jean Emmanuel Ouedraogo.

An investigation is ongoing, but the BBC and Voice of America were suspended for covering the HRW report.

READ ALSOBurkina Faso Suspends BBC and Voice of America

HRW stated the killings may be part of a wider military campaign against civilians. Survivors said soldiers rounded up villagers before shooting them.

"These massacres are just the latest killings by the Burkina Faso military," said Tirana Hassan, from HRW.

Burkina Faso's military junta, in power since a 2022 coup, aims to end insurgency but violence persists. The EU and UN accuse the country of human rights abuses.

The government criticizes media coverage, accusing it of undermining the military's morale. Broadcasting BBC and Voice of America is halted for two weeks, and media outlets are warned against reporting on the issue.

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