Suspected Burkina Faso jihadists 'were planning attack'

2018-05-24 20:13

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Three suspected jihadists who were killed in a pre-dawn raid by Burkina Faso security forces had been "planning an attack" in the capital Ouagadougou, the country's prosecutor said on Wednesday.

The militants, along with a fourth who was captured, were tracked down to a house in Ouagadougou on Tuesday.

"It has been established that they were planning an attack in the capital in June against key targets," said prosecutor Maiza Sereme.

The militants also had "a link" with a brazen attack in March on Burkina's armed forces headquarters and the French embassy.

Two number plates which matched those of mopeds used in the attack were found in the house, she added.

In Tuesday's operation, a member of a gendarmerie assault unit died of his wounds and six other people - four gendarmes and two neighbours - were injured, the defence ministry said.

Police found six assault rifles, explosives and detonators, French and Burkinabe military clothing, mobile phones and SIM cards, and a notebook with writing in Arabic, it added.

Security Minister Clement Sawadogo said Tuesday's raid had targeted "suspected terrorists with a connection to the March 2 attacks."

The inhabitants of the house had "an arsenal which they used to fight back against our men... it's clear that they really were terrorists equipped to carry out missions," Sawadogo said.

Burkina Faso is in the grip of a three-year-old jihadist insurgency that has killed scores of people and driven thousands from their homes.

Ouagadougou has come under attack three times, mostly recently on March 2, when jihadists attacked the military headquarters and French embassy in a coordinated operation claimed by the so-called Group to Support Islam and Muslims (GSIM).

Eight soldiers and eight assailants were killed, and 61 soldiers and 24 civilians were injured, according to an official toll released three days later.

The anti-terror operation came eight days after the assassination of the prefect - the state's paramount representative at local level - in Oursi, a town in the far north near the Mali frontier.

Last month, the authorities in the eastern and northern border regions arrested around 100 people and seized explosives.

In the previous attacks in Ouagadougou, in January 2016, jihadists attacked the city's Splendid Hotel and a cafe, leaving 30 dead, around half of them foreign nationals.

In August 2017, two young gunmen opened fire on people at a Turkish restaurant just metres (yards) away from the Splendid Hotel, killing 19 people, at least eight of them foreigners.

* Sign up to News24's top Africa news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO THE HELLO AFRICA NEWSLETTER

FOLLOW News24 Africa on Twitter and Facebook

Read more on:    burkina faso  |  west africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.