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Archive for Burkina Faso

Newsline: French Embassy Asks Burkina Faso for Increased Protection

The French embassy in Burkina Faso has asked the West African state for more protection after violent protests targeted the property last week, a letter to the government and a diplomatic source said. In a letter to Burkina Faso’s foreign ministry seen by Reuters, the French embassy said Burkina Faso’s military police did nothing on Nov. 18 as hundreds of protesters violently attacked the embassy, throwing stones and other projectiles at its walls. (https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2022-11-21/french-embassy-asks-burkina-faso-for-more-protection-after-protests) Some of the officers charged with protecting the embassy were captured on video playing cards as the protest unfolded, the letter said. Anti-French sentiment and protests have surged this year in Burkina Faso, a former French colony where France maintains strong ties and has special forces stationed in the country.

Newsline: Burkina Faso protesters tried to storm French embassy

Police in Burkina Faso fired tear gas on Friday to disperse angry protesters who attempted to storm the French embassy in the capital Ouagadougou, local media reported. The protesters, who were demanding the expulsion of the French ambassador, rallied at the municipal stadium in the morning before heading to the French embassy, where they were dispersed by police tear gas, according to the local daily Le Faso. “Police fired tear gas after negotiations with the protesters asking them to leave the scene peacefully failed. But the protesters responded by stoning the embassy,” it said. (https://www.yenisafak.com/en/world/angry-protesters-try-to-storm-french-embassy-in-burkina-faso-report-3655785) Video footage showed the protesters, some riding on motorcycles, blowing whistles and vuvuzelas shouting slogans such as “down with France.” The protesters, mainly youth, accuse France of being responsible for Burkina Faso’s problems, including insecurity.

Newsline: U.S. diplomats told Burkina Faso not planning to hire Russian fighters like Mali

Burkina Faso’s interim President Ibrahim Traore has assured U.S. diplomats that he has no intention of inviting Russian Wagner forces to fight militants in the country, U.S. Under Secretary for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland said on Wednesday. “We had a chance to sit with interim President Traore and his leadership team, including his defence minister. He was unequivocal in saying that only Burkinabe will defend their country. They have no intention of inviting Wagner,” she said at a digital media briefing. (https://news.yahoo.com/burkina-faso-not-planning-hire-164211714.html) There has been concern that Burkina Faso might follow the lead of neighbouring Mali, which late last year hired mercenary fighters from Russia’s Wagner group to help its army fight Islamist insurgents. Security has deteriorated since Wagner entered Mali, rights abuses have been reported and United Nations peacekeepers have been squeezed out, said Nuland, who has just returned to the United States from a West Africa tour.

Newsline: French Embassy in Burkina Faso attacked after coup

The French Embassy in Burkina Faso’s capital was attacked on Saturday after supporters of the West African nation’s new coup leader accused France of harboring the ousted interim president, a charge French authorities vehemently denied. Lt. Col. Paul Henri Sandaogo Damiba was overthrown late Friday only nine months after he’d mounted a coup himself in Burkina Faso, which has been failing to effectively counter rising violence by Islamic extremists. Comments by a new junta spokesman earlier Saturday set into motion an outburst of anger in Ouagadougou, the capital. Damiba’s whereabouts remained unknown but France’s Foreign Ministry issued a strongly worded statement: “We formally deny involvement in the events unfolding in Burkina Faso. The camp where the French forces are based has never hosted Paul Henri Sandaogo Damiba nor has our embassy.” (https://www.mprnews.org/story/2022/10/01/protesters-attack-french-embassy-in-burkina-faso-after-coup) Video on social media showed residents with lit torches outside the perimeter of the French embassy.

Newsline: The Netherlands to get three new embassies

The Netherlands is to establish three new embassies, in Armenia, Niger and Burkina Faso, foreign minister Stef Blok has told MPs. The current diplomatic missions in Niamey and Ouagadougou will be expanded and given full embassy status as part of cabinet efforts to focus more attention on the Sahel region, Blok said. (https://www.dutchnews.nl/news/2019/12/diplomatic-expansion-the-netherlands-to-get-three-new-embassies/) Both offices are currently satellites of the Dutch embassy in Mali. The new embassy in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, means there will also be Dutch representation throughout the region, the minister said. In addition, the current Dutch diplomatic missions in Abuja (Nigeria), Amman, Bagdad, Beijing, Bogota, Brussels, Caracas, Geneva, New York, Rabat, Tirana and Vilnius will be strengthened, Blok said. The government’s coalition accord included a commitment to spend €40m to strengthen the Dutch diplomatic presence abroad and reopen embassies and consulates. Some €10m has already been spent on adding 29 posts to the Dutch diplomatic mission south and east of the EU, because of the instability in these regions. In May 2017, the government advisory board for international affairs AIV said €70m to €80m a year needed to be spent to bring Dutch embassies up to scratch following years of cutbacks.

Newsline: China opens embassy after Burkina switches from Taiwan

China opened its new embassy in the Burkina Faso capital of Ouagadougou on Thursday after the Sahel state stunned Taiwan by switching diplomatic ties to Beijing. The official opening comprised the unveiling of a plaque in an upmarket hotel where the embassy is being housed temporarily while a new building for it is constructed. “Today is a historic day,” declared Vice Prime Minister Hu Chunhua, who led a major delegation to Ouagadougou to oversee the event. “As of today, the embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Burkina Faso is open,” Mr Hu said, describing the mission as the “driver of Chinese-Burkinabe friendship”.

http://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/news/africa/China-opens-Burkina-embassy/4552902-4660072-jgkanr/index.html

Newsline: French embassy attacked in Burkina Faso’s capital

Four attackers at the French Embassy in Burkina Faso have been “neutralized,” the government of Burkina Faso said Friday. Both the French Embassy and the General Staff of the Armed Forces, the headquarters of Burkina Faso’s armed forces, have come under attack, a government statement said, and there are security forces on the scene. It urged people to keep calm and avoid areas where there might be gunfire.

https://edition.cnn.com/2018/03/02/africa/burkina-faso-ouagadougou-attack-intl/index.html

Newsline: Burkina Faso recalls ambassador to Libya over ‘slave markets’ report

Burkina Faso’s foreign minister said it had recalled its ambassador to Libya over a report that black African migrants were being auctioned as slaves there. The decision by the West African nation followed the broadcast by CNN of footage of what it said was an auction of men offered to Libyan buyers as farmhands and sold for $400, a chilling echo of the trans-Saharan slave trade of centuries past. Libya’s ambassador to Burkina Faso said his country was being unfairly blamed for a global problem that all nations affected must come together to solve.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-burkina-libya/burkina-faso-recalls-ambassador-to-libya-over-slave-markets-report-idUSKBN1DK2I7

Newsline: State Department identifies American killed in Burkina Faso attack

An American killed in the attack by al Qaeda in Burkina Faso has been identified as Michael James Riddering, State Department spokesman John Kirby said in a statement on Saturday. The emailed statement did not provide any more information about Riddering. Kirby added that the U.S. embassy were in contact with local authorities and was working to assist U.S. citizens. Security forces in Burkina Faso retook a hotel in the capital on Saturday, a day after al Qaeda fighters seized it in an assault that killed at least 28 people from at least 18 countries and marked a major escalation of Islamist militancy in West Africa.

http://news.yahoo.com/american-killed-burkina-faso-attack-identified-state-department-021312900.html

Newsline: French embassy urges to avoid area of ongoing Burkina Faso hotel siege

The French embassy said on its website that a “terrorist attack” was underway in Ouagadougou and urged people to avoid the area. An Air France flight from Paris to Ouagadougou was diverted to neighbouring Niger. Burkina Faso troops supported by French special forces were battling Al-Qaeda linked gunmen in the early hours of Saturday in a Ouagadougou hotel where at least 20 people have been killed. 63 hostages were rescued, 33 of them wounded, from the Burkinabe capital’s four-star Splendid hotel about two hours after the assault began and heavy gun battles were still being waged on the top floors of the hotel, popular with UN staff and foreigners. Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) claimed responsibility for the attack saying it was “revenge against France and the disbelieving West”, according to US-based monitoring group SITE.

http://news.yahoo.com/security-forces-launch-assault-besieged-burkina-faso-hotel-024140068.html