At least six people were killed in northern Burkina Faso in several attacks attributed to jihadists, local and military sources told AFP on Sunday.
Several hundred people took to the streets of Burkina over the weekend to protest the wave of jihadist attacks engulfing the poor West African nation.
“A terrorist attack cost six civilians their lives in Alga,” a town in the province of Bam, on Saturday, a security source told AFP.
“The terrorists, who came in large numbers, attacked the (nearby) village of Boulounga and the gold-mining site of Alga,” a resident said, confirming the same toll.
“They set fire to houses and looted property on the gold-mining site,” he said, adding that “at least four people” had been injured.
Residents were leaving the village on Sunday, heading towards the large town of Kaya, some 100 kilometers (60 miles) away, he said.
A second security source said another “deadly attack” took place Saturday night in Seytenga, also in the north of the country, near the Niger border.
There were “several victims,” the source said, without giving further details.
People in Seytenga fled to Dori, a town in northern Burkina Faso.
A local politician in Dori confirmed “the massive arrival of more than 2,000 people in the town”, adding that “the authorities and people are working hard to set up a site to receive the displaced.”
A government statement Sunday confirmed the attack, saying a death toll had not yet been established because of the “complexity of the situation.”
On Thursday, suspected jihadists killed 11 police in Seytenga, the army said.
A gendarme brigade came under a “terrorist attack,” the military said, adding that they died along with “several terrorists.”
One of the poorest countries in the world, Burkina Faso has been gripped by an almost seven-year insurgency launched by jihadists crossing from neighboring Mali.
More than 2,000 people have died and some 1.8 million people have fled their homes.
The nation has been under military rule since January, when colonels angered at failures to roll back the insurgency ousted the elected president, Roch Marc Christian Kabore.
After a relative lull, jihadist attacks resumed, inflicting a toll of more than 200 civilian and military deaths over the past three months.