Skip to main content
18 Feb 2020 | 01:15 AM UTC

Burkina Faso: Explosive device kills five soldiers in Loroum province February 16

Improvised explosive device (IED) targets a military vehicle in Loroum province on February 16, killing five soldiers; similar attacks likely over the near term

security
BFA

Event

An improvised explosive device (IED) detonated near a Burkinabe military vehicle while it was traveling through Loroum province (Nord region) on Sunday, February 16. The device targeted soldiers in a relief unit from Banh department, killing three soldiers immediately while another two later died from their wounds. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the bombing.

Similar attacks targeting security forces are likely in the region over the near term.

Context

Burkina Faso declared a state of emergency for the country's border regions on January 1 due to militant operations. Terrorism has become an increasingly severe security threat in Burkina Faso since 2015. Educational institutions, local government officials, and security forces are especially targeted. Initially concentrated in the Sahel region, attacks have spread across other regions.

Attacks are usually attributed to Ansarul Islam and other groups affiliated with Al-Qa'ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).

Advice

Individuals in Burkina Faso are advised to monitor developments relating to the security situation, obey local regulations (e.g. state-of-emergency orders), and remain vigilant for criminal and militant activity.

Due to severe threats of terrorism and kidnapping, individuals present in Burkina Faso - including the capital Ouagadougou - are strongly advised to be discreet regarding personal details, particularly information concerning nationality, employment, family, etc. Individuals are also advised to avoid public events and places frequented by Westerners, to remain vigilant at all times, and to report any suspicious objects or behavior to the authorities.