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21 people are killed in alleged jihadist attacks in Burkina Faso

By 06/07/2023 11:11 PMNo CommentsBy YidInfo Staff

Security sources said on Wednesday that attacks by suspected jihadists had claimed the lives of 21, most of them members of the security services, in Burkina Faso.

According to a source, 15 members of the VDP volunteer militia and four soldiers were killed, and five others were injured on Monday in Sawenga, in central-eastern Burkina.

Another security source corroborated the death toll, stating that the conflict occurred during an operation to secure the region and that “more than 50 terrorists were neutralized” in an airborne counterattack.

Separately, a police source reported that an attack on a police border post at Yendere, on the southwest border with Ivory Coast, resulted in the deaths of one police officer and two civilians on Monday night.

The attack was corroborated by a local trucker, who also noted that some locals had already fled to Ivory Coast due to terrorist incursions.

According to the UN’s refugee agency, Ivory Coast is home to almost 18,000 Burkinabe refugees, more than double the projected number for 2022.

Burkina Faso, one of the world’s poorest and most unstable nations, is contending with a terrorist insurgency that rushed in from neighboring Mali in 2015.

Official estimates place the amount of the country that is not under government control at close to one-third.

According to an NGO count, at than 10,000 civilians, soldiers, and police have been killed, and at least two million people have been forced to from their homes.

The military’s frustration with its inability to end the insurgency provoked two coups last year, which resulted in the promotion of a young army captain named Ibrahim Traore.

There will be no dialogue with the jihadists, according to the junta.

The VDP—the Volunteers for the Defence of the Fatherland militia—is the cornerstone of its anti-jihadist campaign.

The force comprises civilian volunteers who undergo a two-week military training program before joining the army to perform tasks including surveillance, information collection, and escorting.

The VDP has lost hundreds of members since its establishment in December 2019, mainly due to ambushes or roadside bombings.

Despite the setbacks, the government launched a successful recruiting drive last year that resulted in 90,000 people signing up, significantly exceeding the goal of 50,000.


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