Students in Burkina Faso fear extremists more than COVID-19
Balkissa Barro, 10, center, walks to school with friends in the Burkina Faso village of Dori Tuesday Oct. 20, 2020. In Burkina Faso, worries over the COVID-19 pandemic come second to threats of attacks by extremists linked to al-Qaida and the Islamic State group. At Wendou school, 1,400 children use 14 hand-washing stations and no one has masks, said Dofiko Kone, the headmaster. Although they’ve now returned to class, school meals haven’t yet started and the little support he gets from aid groups is not enough to sustain them. “The children go to school but when they come back ... there is no food, there is no place to sleep,” he said.
Burkina Faso votes amid ongoing extremist violence, threats
Voters went to the polls in Burkina Faso on Sunday for the elections that have been marred by ongoing extremist violence in this landlocked West African nation. “The reasons are mainly security and also it’s impossible to find someone to manage the polling stations,” Barry said. Burkina Faso experts say the violence and intimidation show how limited the authorities’ control and legitimacy really are. It’s about the development of Burkina Faso, it’s about peace in our country, so it’s important that each Burkinabe vote,” he said. ___AP reporter Arsene Kabore in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, contributed to this report.
Burkina Faso to vote amid escalating violence
Supporters of Burkina Faso President Roch Kabore attend a campaign rally in Bobo-Dioulasso Thursday, Nov. 5, 2020. Burkina Faso will go to the polls on Nov. 22, 2020, to vote in presidential and legislative elections marred by ongoing violence. (AP Photo/Sam Mednick)OUAGADOUGOU – Burkina Faso will vote in presidential and legislative elections on Sunday, amid escalating extremist violence that’s killed more than 2,000 people this year and displaced some one million people from their homes. Komboigo told the AP that Burkina Faso was in a “catastrophe” and blamed Kabore for being unwilling to pursue a more diplomatic approach with the jihadists. Kabore is expected to be re-elected and needs more than 50% of the vote to win in the first round.
Burkina Faso moves ahead with vote despite extremist attacks
Supporters of Burkina Faso President Roch Kabore attend a campaign rally in Bobo-Dioulasso Thursday, Nov. 5, 2020. Burkina Faso will go to the polls on Nov. 22, 2020, to vote in presidential and legislative elections marred by ongoing violence. Burkina Faso will go to the polls on Nov. 22 to vote in presidential and legislative elections marred by ongoing violence. This month’s vote is only Burkina Faso’s second democratically held election since gaining independence from France in 1960. “The stakes are high in a way, because of (Burkina Faso’s) severe problems and the importance of consolidating democracy,” said Alex Thurston, assistant professor of political science at the University of Cincinnati in the United States.
A look at how Mali's coup may affect neighboring countries
A number of elections are set to be held later this year involving incumbents, including in Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Niger. The two countries are both part of the G5 Sahel regional force along with Chad, Niger and Burkina Faso which is trying to battle extremists across the Sahel. Burkina Faso was long spared the kind of extremist violence seen across the border, but that has changed. Coupcast, a project of One Earth Future using historical data to predict the likelihood of a coup attempt, put Burkina Faso in the top 10 African countries likely to see a coup in last year's report. Coupcast also put Niger in the top 10 African countries likely to see a coup in their 2019 report.