| 3 February 2023, Friday |

UN chief calls for swift action on Burkina Faso violence

Antonio Guterres, UN secretary-general, called on the Burkinabe authorities to swiftly bring the perpetrators of violence in the country to justice.

His remarks came as the government announced that the death toll from Wednesday’s attack in northern Burkina Faso had risen to 80, including 59 civilians, 15 soldiers, and six army auxiliary members.

The Burkinabe authorities should “spare no effort in identifying and swiftly bringing the perpetrators to justice”, Guterres said in a statement.

Condemning the attack, Guterres conveyed his condolences to the bereaved families and wished a speedy recovery to the injured in the attack perpetrated by unidentified gunmen on a convoy near the town of Arbinda.

The Secretary-General is deeply concerned by the spiral of violence orchestrated by extremist groups in the Liptako-Gourma region, said the statement.

The UN chief also reiterated the solidarity of the United Nations with the government and people of Burkina Faso and the Sahelian countries in their bid to counter and prevent terrorism and violent extremism, promote social cohesion and achieve sustainable development.

Many people have perished at the hands of terrorists since 2015 in the West African country.

More than 230,000 people have been internally displaced, according to official figures.

The UN Security Council has expressed concern about the deterioration of the security situation in some countries of the West Africa and Sahel region and the rise of terrorism in the Sahel and Lake Chad Basin.