OUAGADOUGOU – Ten people were killed in an attack in northern Burkina Faso on Monday morning, and four others were missing, a government source and a security source said.
Unidentified armed men attacked the group of civilians as they were driving their carts to market in the town of Markoye, in Burkina Faso’s Sahel reserve, the sources said.
The area, which borders Mali and Niger, is overrun by Islamist militants who wage frequent attacks despite the presence of a regional counter-terrorism force and French troops.
Burkina Faso on Monday marked the 61st anniversary of its army with a ceremony focused on the fight against terrorism.
“We will get through it together, or not at all,” said President Roch Kabore in remarks to journalists.
Islamist attacks have surged across Africa’s Sahel region, killing thousands and driving millions from their homes in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger. More than 1.3 million Burkinabe have been displaced by the violence in the last two years, according to the U.N. Refugee Agency (UNHCR).
Five police officers were killed on Sunday in another attack in the north of the country, and about 15 attackers were killed in the ensuing fight, the security ministry said.
The state news agency also reported that two women and a baby were killed on Sunday when their cart hit an improvised land mine in the department of Ouindigui.
(Reporting by Thiam Ndiaga; Writing by Nellie Peyton; Editing by Peter Graff)