Unknown assailants have killed 70 civilians in Burkina Faso: Prosecutor

Unknown assailants have killed 70 civilians in Burkina Faso: Prosecutor

Unidentified assailants attacked a town in the north central region of Burkina Faso, killing 70 people, the state prosecutor said Monday, ending days of speculation on the latest large-scale massacre of civilians.

In a statement, Simon Gnanou said the attack occurred on Nov. 5 in Zaongo.

An initial investigation showed the “provisional toll stands at 70 people killed, mainly children and elderly people,” the statement said.

“Further investigations, in particular after listening to testimonies of relatives of the victims and the injured, will make it possible to establish the exact death toll, injured and possibly missing persons.”

The prosecutor added that the assailants behind the killings were still unknown but “investigations are continuing to identify them.”

The provisional death toll was announced after a team of investigators led by the state prosecutor visited the scene.

The death figures were provided a day after the European Union called on the Burkina Faso junta to carry out an investigation into the massacre.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said in a statement Sunday that about 100 civilians, including women and children, were believed to have been killed.

Burkina Faso is battling an insurgency that spread from neighboring Mali over the past decade linked to the al-Qaeda and Daesh/ISIS terrorist groups.

The West African country recorded 1,135 deaths attributed to terrorists in 2022, a 50% increase compared to 2021, according to Global Terrorism Index 2023 released in March.

In September, Burkina Faso’s military government said it thwarted a coup attempt by security and intelligence services.

Source » aa.com.tr