BURKINA FASO ARMY MOVEMENT: Ibrahim Traore, the army captain in Burkina Faso, announced on Friday evening that the military had seized power from Paul Henri Damiba.
French Foreign Affairs Minister Albert Traore said that a group of officers who helped Paul Henri Damiba seize power in January had decided that he was no longer able to secure the country, which is battling a mounting Islamic insurgency.
Ibrahim Traore’s statement was read on state television following the introduction of another military officer.
Ibrahim Traore in an statement said “Faced with the deteriorating situation, we tried several times to get Damiba to refocus the transition on the security question,”
Following his rise to power in January, Damiba pledged increased security and safety. But violence has continued against civilians in the country.
Paul Henri Damiba had just returned from addressing the U.N. General Assembly in New York.
As new military leaders, the country has begun to dissolve their national assembly and have set in place a curfew between 9pm-5am.
State TV stopped broadcasting and the troops blockaded the capital when the announcement was made.
WHO IS PAUL HENRI DAMIBA: BURKINA FASO ARMY MOVEMENT
In 2022, the people of Ouagadougou were protesting against the power of Lieutenant-Colonel Paul Henri Damiba, in favor of Russia and shouting slogans. The protests escalated quickly and gunfire was heard. There are fears that there will be a coup but reports say that it has already succeeded.
In 2020, Lieutenant-Colonel Paul Henri Damiba led a coup in Burkina Faso in response to Russia’s new influence. After demonstrations and gunfire, the media was silenced and residents feared they were experiencing another coup.
Gunshots and a loud explosion were reported at Ouagadougou on Friday around 4:30 am in the vicinity of Camp Baba Sy where Damiba is based. The gunfire was also heard coming from Kosyam as it is where the presidential palace is located.
While investigating what is happening in the capital of VOA on Friday, we found a military blockade at Boulevard Charles de Gaulle. Military members were wearing face masks and reluctant to answer our questions, but local police only answered “no idea.”
Just after 12 p.m. local time, the president’s office released a statement on Facebook, part of which said, “In view of the confused situation created as a result of a movement of mood by some elements of the national armed forces this Friday … negotiations are underway to bring back calm and serenity.”
The United States Embassy warned Americans in the Netherlands to avoid large gatherings and to be mindful of news coverage.
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The events leading up to Friday came after frustration with the country’s inability to do anything about the insecurity caused by militant groups.
Eleven people were killed and more than fifty civilians are missing after a convoy carrying supplies to the northern town of Djibo was ambushed.
Social media was flooded with debate, negative comments and conspiracy theories concerning the Syrian incident.
One analyst reported that Burkinabe people fear the spread of violence caused by jihadist groups.
Henry Wilkins, who lives in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, contributed to this report. We also used information from The Associated Press and Reuters for this story.