Sat. May 28th, 2022

Hundreds of people are marching through the center of Ouagadougou as anger against armed attacks in the country increases.

Security forces fired tear gas at protesters, blocking streets and throwing stones at Burkina Faso’s capital. anger grows about the government’s inability to stop armed attacks from spreading across the country.

Hundreds of people marched through downtown Ouagadougou on Saturday, singing for Roch’s president Marc Christian Kabore to resign.

“The jihadists strike [the country], people die, others flee their homes … We want Roch and his government to resign because their handling of the country is not good. We will never support them, ”protester Amidou Tiemtore told The Associated Press news agency.

Some people are also protesting in solidarity with neighboring Mali, whose citizens are angry with the West African economic bloc, ECOWAS, who imposed sanctions on the land after the military government delayed this year’s elections.

Protesters take to the streets of Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou Protesters take to the streets of Burkina Faso’s capital Ouagadougou [Sophie Garcia/AP Photo]

Burkina Faso’s protest comes amid a escalation in attacks linked to al-Qaeda and the ISIL (ISIS) group that killed thousands and displaced 1.5 million people.

The deteriorating security situation has led to street protests calling for Kabore to resign.

Nearly 12,000 people were displaced within two weeks in December, according to the United Nations.

Four French soldiers were also wounded during a joint operation with Burkina Faso’s army. This is the first time French soldiers have been injured in the country since two men were killed in a hostage-taking operation in 2019, Pascal Ianni, spokesman for the head of defense for the French armed forces, told the AP.

France has about 5,000 troops in the region, but has so far had minimal involvement in Burkina Faso compared to Niger or Mali.

This is the second government’s crackdown on protests since November, which comes after the government closed access to Facebook last week for security reasons and after 15 people were arrested for allegedly planning a coup.

Negotiation plans

As tensions escalate, the government struggles to stem the tide. Last month, the president fired his prime minister and replaced most of the cabinet.

According to a military official and a former soldier who did not want to be identified, it is said that the government’s national security arm is also preparing to reopen negotiations with the armed rebels. The last time the government negotiated secret ceasefire talks with the rebels was around the presidential election in 2020 when the fighting subsided for several months.

But locals say it is too late for talks and that the country is being invaded by armed groups that control pieces of land, plant their flags and make people obey their interpretation of Islamic law.

“They just come and push people [out of their homes] and there is no [government] strategy, ”said Ousmane Amirou Dicko, Emir of Liptako. For the first time since the conflict, he said he no longer felt comfortable driving from the capital to his home in the Sahel.

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