Terrorism in Burkina Faso is spreading to eastern regions: GSIM terrorism

Terrorism in Burkina Faso is spreading to eastern regions: GSIM terrorism

Boutros Hussein, Noriko Watanabe, and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

President Roch Marc Christian Kabore of Burkina Faso is calling for greater collaboration between the general public and the armed forces, in order to protect the nation-state from Islamist terrorists who are gradually expanding to other parts of this nation. This concern was voiced after attacks against army headquarters and the Embassy of France by the Sunni Islamist terrorist group called the Group to Support Islam and Muslims (GSIM – or Jama’a Nusrat ul-Islam wa al-Muslimin’) that happened earlier this year – and these words remain potent after recent terrorist attacks in September.

In recent times, other Sunni Islamist terrorist attacks have blighted Burkina Faso. Hence, it is clear that security measures need to be improved and this includes data, intelligence, surveillance, and other important areas. Equally important, terrorist attacks are now increasingly happening in eastern parts of the country – hence, with terrorists already being embedded in northern areas, it is clear that the crisis is growing in Burkina Faso.

Associated Press (Washington Times link) reported earlier this year, “Islamic extremists opened fire on the French Embassy and army headquarters in Burkina Faso’s capital… killing at least seven soldiers, while eight of the militants were slain, a government official said.”

France, with strong ties to the region, is a central component in tackling the terrorist threat. Hence, the 5,000 multinational forces represented by Burkina Faso, Chad, France, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger are needed – in time, this number is likely to expand. Therefore, Sunni Islamists targeted the Embassy of France and the armed forces of Burkina Faso earlier this year in a major terrorist incident to highlight the reach they have. Since then, improvised explosive devices and other Sunni Islamist attacks are increasing in other parts of the nation.

For example, France 24 reports,On September 5, a group of Burkinabé soldiers were travelling to defuse mines laid by jihadist groups when, in the eastern town of Kabonga, they were hit by an improvised explosive device (IED). Two were killed and six were injured, while the perpetrators of the attack have not been identified.”

Kabore stated earlier this year, “In these difficult moments, I would like to reaffirm to Africa and the entire world my unshakeable faith in the capacity of the Burkinabe people to preserve their dignity and ferociously oppose their enemies.”

The BBC reports, “Since Emmanuel Macron came to power, France has been trying to mobilise its former colonies in West Africa, and the United Nations, to tackle the Islamist militant groups which operate in the Sahel region south of the Sahara. But, so far, progress has been slow.”

Sadly, it now seems that eastern Burkina Faso is now becoming an area of terrorist concern and this bodes ill in the fight against terrorism in this nation.



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