Burkina Faso: At Least 35 Civilians Killed in Convoy Attack

Photo: AFP [via Le Monde]

The Facts

  • According to the regional governor, at least 35 civilians were killed and 37 injured on Mon. in restive northern Burkina Faso when a convoy of vehicles struck an improvised explosive device (IED).

  • The army-escorted supply convoy was reportedly heading to the capital Ouagadougou when the vehicle was hit by the IED between the northern towns of Djibo and Bourzanga, reportedly killing mostly traders and students.

The Spin

Pro-establishment narrative

It's a good sign that increasing cooperation is emerging between Burkina Faso and its West African neighbors to jointly combat the spread of terrorism in the region and enhance security. The problem of jihadism can only be solved on a multilateral level, and, if regional states put aside their disputes and act together, there's a real possibility of defeating jihadism.

Establishment-critical narrative

The tragic incident once again proves one thing above all: Burkina Faso's military government hasn't succeeded in keeping its promise to eliminate the jihadist threat. The same is true in neighboring Mali, where a coup government also holds the reins. As long as the response of local governments is focused purely on counterterrorism operations without also addressing the economy and governance, security is unlikely to improve.

Cynical narrative

While the Ukraine war dominates the Western headlines, a catastrophe is unfolding in Africa that's barely noticed. The death of dozens of innocent people in Burkina Faso is just the latest indication of a continent in the grips of jihadist terror. And while France is accused of nurturing Sahel terrorism rather than countering it, Washington, which claims to be leading the world in the fight against terrorism, also seems to be abandoning the Sahel states.

Establishment split



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