At least eight people — aid workers, civilians and army auxiliaries — were killed in two attacks by suspected jihadists in central-eastern and northwestern Burkina Faso on Wednesday, security, NGO and local sources said.
Three civilians and three volunteers with the security forces died when a village in central-eastern Burkina Faso was attacked in the early morning, a local source said.
The attack on the village of Bekoure, in Bittou district, lasted several hours, a resident told AFP.
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“Three civilians and three Volunteers for the Defence of the Fatherland (VDP) were killed,” the resident said, adding that several people had been injured and many homes burnt down.
A security source confirmed the attack, adding that the injured were evacuated to a hospital ten kilometres away.
In the second attack, “a clearly marked Doctors without Borders (MSF) vehicle” carrying a medical team of four people” that was heading between towns in the northwest of the country was “targeted by armed men who fired on the crew,” the NGO said in a statement.
The two victims were Burkinabe nationals who had worked for MSF since 2020.
“This is a deliberate and intentional attack on a clearly identified humanitarian team, in the framework of its medical mission,” MSF France president Dr Isabelle Defourny said.
In the same statement, MSF announced it was suspending its activities in the Boucle du Mouhoun where the attack occurred.
One of the poorest countries in the world, Burkina Faso has been rocked by a jihadist insurgency that swept in from neighbouring Mali in 2015.
Thousands have been killed, more than two million people have fled their homes and around 40 percent of the country lies outside the government’s control.
Anger within the military at the mounting toll sparked two coups last year.
On Monday, six civilians were killed in a suspected jihadist attack in the centre-west region, the local governor said.