Gunmen kill 10 police in Burkina Faso

Agence France-Presse. Ouagadougou | Published at 12:04pm on March 01, 2020

Gunmen killed 10 police officers in northeastern Burkina Faso on Saturday, the latest attack in a country battling extremist attacks.

Another three officers were wounded in the attack at Sebba, the main town in Yagha province, a police statement said.

An earlier statement had put the death toll at nine and said the attack was staged by several dozen heavily armed men who had targeted an army detachment and the town’s police station.

The ‘large-scale terrorist attack unfortunately resulted’ in ‘heavy material damage’ with the assailants making off with weapons.

Another security source said that the victims were mostly police officers, and the attack was ‘aimed in particular at the police station’.

Burkina Faso, which shares a border with Mali and Niger, is caught up in an Islamist insurgency in which increasingly frequent attacks have claimed more than 800 lives and displaced over 800,000 people since 2015.

An armed group attacked Sebba, near the Niger border, on February 10, killing one resident and abducting seven from the home of a pastor.

Five of the abductees, including the pastor, were found dead three days later, while two women survived, according to the regional governor.

One of the poorest countries in the world, Burkina Faso’s armed forces are weak, struggling with poor equipment and lack of training and funding.

According to UN figures, extremist attacks in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger left nearly 4,000 people dead last year.