The head of the junta sits a little more his power in Burkina Faso.

Lieutenant-Colonel Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba, president of the transition, who came to power by a putsch at the end of January in this country undermined by jihadist violence, has dismissed his Minister of Defense Barthélémy Simporé, and replaces him in this post, according to decrees published on Monday.

The first decree, read on national television, mentions the replacement of Barthélémy Simporé.

The second indicates that the “President of Faso assumes the functions of Minister of National Defense and Veterans”.

At his side, Colonel-Major Silas Keita was appointed Deputy Minister in charge of National Defense and promoted to Brigadier General.

Jihadist attacks do not weaken

He is the only newcomer to the government of this mini-reshuffle which comes after a series of deadly jihadist attacks since the beginning of the month.

On Monday, two soldiers were killed and a "dozen terrorists neutralized" during a "complex attack" against a military detachment in the province of Oudalan in the north of the country.

On September 5, at least 35 civilians, including women and children, were killed by the explosion of an improvised device as a supply convoy passed between Djibo and Bourzanga.

The following day, at least nine people, seven civilians and two soldiers, were killed in two separate attacks by suspected jihadists, which targeted civilians and a military patrol.

The state controls barely 60% of the territory

Burkina Faso, where the military in power have promised to make the fight against jihadist their priority, is confronted like several neighboring countries with the violence of armed movements affiliated with Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group.

These attacks have caused thousands of deaths there since 2015 and some two million displaced people.

More than 40% of the territory is outside state control, according to official figures.


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