Mayor, Soldiers Among Eight Killed in Burkina Faso Attack

Gunmen ambushed a convoy in northern Burkina Faso on Monday, killing at least eight people including five soldiers and a town mayor, security and local sources said.

“Armed individuals attacked a convoy of the Pensa town hall, which was under escort,” a local source in the nearby town of Barsalogho told AFP.

Among those killed was Pensa Mayor Souleymane Zabre, while three others in his vehicle are missing, the source added.

A military source said five soldiers were also killed in the attack, along with two “trackers.”

Burkina Faso, one of the world’s poorest countries, has battled a jihadist insurgency since 2015 that spread from neighboring Mali. The north and east of the country are the regions most affected by jihadist killings. The violence has forced more than one million to flee their homes.

Attacks in Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso killed at least 4,000 people in 2019, according to the United Nations. The authorities have been unable to stem the spiral of violence despite help from foreign forces — France has 5,100 troops deployed in the region.

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