Burkina Faso Army Dismisses President in West Africa’s Latest Coup

Ouagadougou-Burkina Faso’s troops said on Monday that they had expelled President Rock Cabole, suspended the constitution, dissolved the government and parliament, and closed the border.

The announcement quoted the military’s statement that the deteriorating security situation and Cabore’s inability to unite West African nations and effectively respond to challenges, including the Islamic rebellion.

Signed by Lieutenant Colonel Paul Henri Sandaogo Damiva and read by another officer on state television, the hijacking took place without violence and the detainees were in a safe place.

This statement was made in the name of an unheard-of entity, the Patriotic Movement for Protection and Restoration, or the French acronym MPSR.

“The MPSR, which includes all divisions of the military, has decided to end President Cabole’s post today,” it said.

The whereabouts of Cabore on Monday were unknown, and there were conflicting explanations for his situation.

In Mali and Guinea, a military coup has overthrown the government for the past 18 months. The army took over in Chad last year after President Idris Devi died in a battle against rebels on the battlefield in the northern part of the country.

Despite being a gold producer, Burkina Faso, a landlocked country, one of the poorest countries in West Africa, has experienced numerous coups since its independence from France in 1960.

MPSR said it would propose a calendar to return to the constitutional order “within a reasonable time frame after consulting with various departments across the country.”

The US State Department said on Monday that it was aware of reports that Cabore had been detained by the military and called for his release. When asked if Washington was assessing the coup, he added that it was “too early” to officially characterize the development of a West African country.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has “strongly condemned attempts to take over the government by force” in Burkina Faso, calling on coup leaders to put down their weapons, a UN spokesman said after a military statement. ..

The broadcast took place after two days of turmoil and horror in the capital Ouagadougou, where shootings broke out in military camps on Sunday, and soldiers demanded more resources to fight Islamic extremists.

Hundreds of residents gathered in Ouagadougou’s Central Nation Square to show their support for the coup.

“We are really happy. We went out for two days to support the army,” said Ibrahimzare. “We are behind them.”

I heard intense gunshots all night around Cabore’s residence.

Earlier, Cabore’s party said it had survived the attempted assassination, but did not provide details. It also said that his personal residence had been looted.

Popular support

On Monday, several armored vehicles belonging to the Presidential Fleet appeared full of bullets near Cabore’s residence. One was blood splattered.

Security sources gave conflicting explanations of Cabore’s situation, with some saying they were detained by the coup organizer, while others said that troops loyal to him took him to a safe place. Reuters could not independently verify his situation.

Islamic extremists ruled Burkina Faso’s territory and forced residents of some areas to comply with their stricter versions of Islamic law, but the military struggle to quell the rebellion conserved scarce national resources. Depleted.

Cabore has faced a wave of protests in recent months amid frustration over the killings of civilians and soldiers by militants. Some of them are related to ISIS and al-Qaeda terrorist groups.

Eli Sawagogo, who lives in Ouagadougou, said the coup was not a surprise to him.

“It was expected because the country had been in this situation for six years without a real solution to this terrorism,” he said. “If the coup is the solution, it’s welcome.”

Colin Duffka, director of West Africa at Human Rights Watch, said the Cabore administration has shown that it cannot tackle a variety of issues.

“The coup and its clear support reveal the inadequacy of the Caboa government to address the deep-seated issues of corruption, governance and protection of civilians, all exponentially exacerbated by the threat of armed Islamists. “She said.

By Thiam Ndiaga