Burkina Faso

CrisisWatch Burkina Faso

Unchanged Situation

Govt renewed mobilisation orders as new civil society group launched criticism of military authorities; civilians continued to suffer amid widespread violence. 

Govt extended mobilisation decree amid criticism from new civil society group. Concerns continued over authorities forcing opponents into security forces including civilian auxiliaries (VDPs) after govt 31 March announced year-long extension to “general mobilisation” protocols to combat terrorism. Although most civil groups remained hesitant or unable to criticise govt amid repression, new civil society movement Front pour la Défence de la République (FDR) 4 April called for dissolution of military junta, elections and civilian transition, and criticised military authorities’ failure to free territory from jihadists as promised; FDR reported to be comprised of former politicians, civil society leaders and security officers, many of whom have taken refuge in Côte d’Ivoire. 

Clashes with jihadists continued, with high toll on civilians. Al-Qaeda-affiliated Group for the Support of Islam and Muslims (JNIM) militants clashed with govt forces and VDPs throughout month with major fatalities recorded across East, Boucle de Mouhoun, South-West, Sahel, Centre-East, North and Centre-North regions. JNIM militants 17 April attacked military near Barsalogho town, Sanmatenga Province (Centre-North), killing at least nineteen and wounding at least ten soldiers. Civilians continued to suffer; notably, JNIM militants 23 April launched attack on Séguénéma town (North) that killed 30 civilians; govt forces next day allegedly killed two civilians from same town. Islamic State Sahel Province militants also accused of launching attacks on civilians including 2 April assault on Woulmassoutou and Sakatemba villages in Seno province (Sahel), killing around twenty.

Govt expelled French diplomats, suspended broadcast of critical foreign channels. Foreign Affairs Minister 16 April expelled three French diplomats, including two political officers, for alleged “subversive activities”. After rights group Human Rights Watch 25 April released report alleging military “summarily executed” at least 223 civilians in two villages in Yatenga province (North) in Feb, govt in following days suspended various international media outlets including BBC and Voice of America for their coverage of report; U.S. and UK 29 April issued joint statement calling for investigation into allegations and reversal of media suspensions.

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In The News

30 Sep 2022
Tensions within the army [in Burkina Faso] have exacerbated over the past months because President Damiba has not been able to restore security in the country. Financial Times
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Mathieu Pellerin

Senior Consulting Analyst, Sahel

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