Protests erupt in Burkina Faso

By: Richard Meyer ~Copy Editor~

Protestors gathered in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, on Nov. 2 demanding that the new military government step aside in favor of the democratic government which was previously in place.
After Burkina Faso’s president Blasie Compaore resigned, the military took power over the country’s government. Citizens reacted with protests and demands that the constitutional rule be reinstated.

Security forces attempted to enforce some order, but gunshots were fired during a clash between the two groups.

Compaore’s resignation followed prior protests involving more than 1 million people against his campaign to run for president as he attempted to extend his 27- year presidency another term. Compaore took over the presidency in 1987 after a bloody coup.

The protests forced him to resign on Oct. 31, and he fled to Côte d’Ivore. On Nov. 1, the military showed support of Lt. Col. Isaac Yacouba Zida, and he will serve as the interim President until the election.

Other groups, such as the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States reacted by calling for an orderly transition back to the previously instated democracy.
Compaore’s decision to resign “opens the necessary political space for all the stakeholders to work together to find a lasting resolution to the crisis facing the country,” the head of the African Union, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, said.

Other countries have reacted to the situation. The United States and France have both threatened to cut aid to the country should the military’s rule continue.

An envoy from the United Nations, Mohamed Ibn Chambas, said the military could face sanctions if it continued its refusal of returning the power to the civilians.