Home Africa Burkina Faso Military Extends Rule By Five Years

Burkina Faso Military Extends Rule By Five Years

Captain Ibrahim Traore, who seized power in a 2022 coup, had promised to hold elections in July this year. But he made clear that elections are not "a priority" until jihadist forces are removed from the country.
Burkina faso military ruler
File Photo of Burkina Faso's military leader Ibrahim Traore escorted by soldiers in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, October 2, 2022. (Vincent Bado/REUTERS)

The military regime in Burkina Faso extended its rule by 60 more months in a new charter  approved on Saturday.

Captain Ibrahim Traore, who seized power in a 2022 coup, had promised to hold elections in July this year. But he made clear that elections are not “a priority” until jihadist forces are removed from the country.

Reports said political parties were absent from the brief meeting during which this decision was cleared.

According to the new charter signed by Traore, the transition is set at 60 months from July 2.  “The elections marking the end of the transition may be organised before this deadline if the security situation so permits,” it added.

The substantial delay will likely deepen concerns about democratic backsliding in West and Central Africa. There have been eight coups in the regions over the past four years.

The charter also allows Traore to run for president when the elections take place.

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Violence fuelled by the fight against Islamist groups linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State has worsened in West Africa’s Sahel region. This occurred after militaries seized power in Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger over the past decade.

Since 2015, Islamist rebels affiliated with Al-Qaeda and ISIS have launched an insurgency. This insurgency has killed thousands and displaced millions.

Burkina Faso experienced a severe escalation of deadly attacks in 2023, with more than 8,000 people reportedly killed, according to U.S.-based crisis-monitoring group ACLED.

International and human rights groups, including the EU  and UN, accused Burkina Faso of serious violations in its fight against Islamists. The accusations cited indiscriminate killings and forced disappearances of dozens of civilians.

(REUTERS)

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