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Burkina president slams ‘dysfunctions’ after attack

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Burkina president slams ‘dysfunctions’ after attack

Burkina Faso’s president has promised to address “dysfunctions” hampering the country’s security forces after a jihadist attack that killed dozens of gendarmes.

In a national speech Thursday night, Roch Marc Christian Kabore said he expected an urgent investigation into the attack to be completed by Tuesday.

“We have to end the unacceptable dysfunctions that are sapping the morale of our combat troops and hampering their effectiveness in fighting armed terrorist groups,” he said.

“Our soldiers must not be abandoned as a result of blatantly culpable bureaucracy or negligence.”

Kabore has faced mounting anger over the failures to stop a jihadist insurgency that spread from neighboring Mali.

Groups linked to Al-Qaeda and the so-called Islamic State group have ravaged the landlocked Sahel nation since 2015, killing some 2,000 people and displacing 1.4 million from their homes.

The November 14 attack saw hundreds of fighters storming a gendarmerie camp in Inata, in the north of the country, killing 53 policemen and four others.

It was the largest daily loss among the security forces in the history of the insurgency.

The gendarmes were to be relieved several days before and had called for help before the attack, saying they were running out of food and ammunition.

“We will remove all disciplinary consequences and take appropriate legal action,” promised Kabore.

He promised to supervise “scrupulously, more than in the past, the issues of logistics, bonuses and strengthening the operational capacity of our combat forces.”

Burkina Faso is one of the poorest countries in the world and its armed forces are ill-equipped against highly mobile jihadist groups.

A protest against Kabore, scheduled for Saturday in the capital Ouagadougou by three groups in an alliance called the November 27 Coalition, has been banned by Mayor Armand Beouinde, according to a security circular seen by AFP on Thursday.

The government also ordered a four-day cut in mobile Internet access starting Wednesday, adding to a previous four-day suspension for “security reasons.”

Source Credit: TheGuardian

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