Burkina Faso: Armed violence and communal tensions escalating dangerously

Burkina Faso: Armed violence and communal tensions escalating dangerously

Dakar (ICRC) – Dozens of civilians have been killed in the East, North and Sahel Regions of Burkina Faso, where armed conflict and other situations of violence, including communal violence, have intensified yet again. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is calling on all parties to the conflict and anyone else taking part in the violence to respect and protect civilians and the wounded and sick.
News release 21 May 2021 Burkina Faso

"As the weeks go by, the number of victims only increases. The situation is as painful as it is worrying," said Laurent Saugy, the head of the ICRC's delegation in Burkina Faso.

Civilians are caught amidst the mounting violence in towns such as Kodyel, Yattajou, Koumbri, Tinakoff and Markoye. Thousands of people have been forced to flee for their safety, joining the million or so others who have already been displaced in Burkina Faso.

"The violence is spiralling out of control, threatening to destroy all hope of cohabitation between the communities," explained Mr Saugy.

Because of the escalating violence, very few people can get to health centres. Moreover, the violence has cost some health workers their lives and others have fled the rural areas affected. The ICRC is redoubling its efforts to support those health centres that have remained open despite the circumstances.

"The violence must stop; it is never too late to show some humanity," said Mr Saugy.

The ICRC has had an operational presence in Burkina Faso since 2006 and is strengthening its presence among those most affected by the violence, by providing impartial assistance alongside the Burkinabe Red Cross Society. The ICRC also seeks to establish and maintain constructive, humanitarian dialogue with everyone involved.

For more information:

Zalissa Sanfo, Communication Officer, Ouagadougou, tel.: + 226 60 55 84 88, szalissa@icrc.org,

Halimatou Amadou, Media Relations Delegate, Dakar, tel.: +221781864687, hamadou@icrc.org