At least 35 civilians killed in Burkina Faso IED convoy blast | Conflict News

Dozens of people were also injured when a convoy carrying supplies to towns in the resilient northern region was hit by an improvised explosive device.

At least 35 civilians were killed when a supply convoy in Burkino Faso’s resilient northern region According to the regional governor, an improvised explosive device (IED) was struck.

Rodolphe Sorgo, governor of the Northeastern Sahel region, which borders Mali and Niger, said the explosion, which injured 37 others, happened as an army convoy was traveling along the road from Bourzanga to Djibo on Monday.

The tri-border area has become the center of a spiral security crisis in the wider region over the past 10 years and has seen increasing attacks by groups affiliated with al-Qaeda and ISIL (ISIS) following military takeovers in Mali and Burkina Faso , in May 2021 and January 2022, respectively.

“One of the civilian vehicles was hit by an improvised explosive device. The provisional toll is 35 dead and 37 injured, all civilians,” the regional governor’s statement said.

“The escort forces quickly secured the perimeter and took measures to help the victims,” ​​the statement said.

A resident in Djibo told AFP that “several dozen vehicles, including trucks and public transport buses” had been hit.

“The victims were mainly merchants who came to buy supplies in Ouagadougou and students who returned to the capital for the next school year,” one resident, who wished to remain anonymous, told the news agency, referring to the country’s capital. country.

The explosion followed a string of attacks on main roads leading to the region’s main cities, Dori and Djibo.

At the beginning of August, at least 15 soldiers were was killed in the area by a double IED burst. In June, at least 86 civilians were was killed by armed attackers north of the town of Seytenga.

Burkina Faso’s military rulers have branded armed groups fighting in the northern and eastern regions of the country. primary carewith the military said it had taken “offensive actions” and also initiated a process of dialogue with certain armed groups, through religious and local leaders.

However, the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED) recorded more attacks this year in Burkina Faso rather than in Niger or Mali, where the security crisis was first triggered by ethnic separatists in the north in 2012, followed by the rise of other armed groups in the central border region.

On Sunday, AFP reported that military leaders in Mali and Burkina Faso had agreed to strengthen their military partnership to fight armed groups, a move that follows the withdrawal of French troops from Mali. , completed in August and Mali’s withdrawal from the regional G5. Sahel coalition force, effective at the end of June.

A mediator from the Economic Community of West African States, the main bloc in the region, previously reported that the authorities in Burkina Faso control only 60% of the country’s 20 million inhabitants.

The Norwegian Refugee Council says nearly one in ten people in Burkina Faso have been displaced by conflict and severe food insecurity has almost doubled compared with 2021 as fields and livestock are destroyed. uninhibited.

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