A police commissioner was killed during a brutal assault by gunmen on a police station in northwestern Burkina Faso, security sources said Friday.
It marks the latest deadly attack in the troubled north of the West African country, which is battling a jihadist revolt that has claimed hundreds of lives.
“The Sanaba district police station in the Boucle du Mouhoun region was targeted in an armed attack around 7:00 pm (1900 GMT)” on Thursday, a security source told AFP.
“Unfortunately the police commissioner was mortally wounded.”
A police officer said “the attack was carried out by a group of about 15 heavily armed individuals on motorbikes”.
“There was a lot of damage caused by a fire,” the officer said on condition of anonymity, pleading for “appropriate equipment and adequate police forces to face terrorists who sometimes have great firepower”.
Burkina Faso is an impoverished and politically fragile country in the heart of the Sahel, and its security forces are badly-equipped, poorly trained and under-funded.
The country’s northern provinces have been battling with a four-year-old wave of jihadist violence that came from neighbouring Mali.
The attacks — typically hit-and-run raids on villages, road mines and suicide bombings — have claimed more than 630 lives nationally, according to an AFP toll. Nearly 500,000 people have been forced to flee their homes.
On Monday, a police officer was killed in an attack on a military post in the northern Bam province.
Late last month, five soldiers died in an ambush at Toeni, in the northwestern province of Sourou.