14 August 2017

Burkina Faso: Gunmen Attack Burkina Faso Restaurant, Many Killed

Photo: The Guardian
(file photo)

Several foreigners were killed when suspected Islamist terrorists attacked a Turkish restaurant in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, officials said. Police and soldiers were battling the assailants.

At least 17 people were killed and eight others wounded in the "terrorist attack", Communications Minister Remi Dandjinou told reporters early on Monday, adding that one French citizen and several other foreigners were included in the provisional death toll.

A Turkish national was previously reported dead.

The unknown attackers opened fire on visitors in Aziz Istanbul, an upscale Turkish restaurant in downtown Ouagadougou. Security forces blocked off the area and were battling the shooters. Witnesses from the scene reported heavy exchange of gunfire hours after the initial attack.

"[The attackers] are confined to one part of the building they attacked," Dandjinou told reporters in televised remarks. "Security and elite forces are conducting an operation."

Police evacuated civilians from the site before moving against the suspected jihadists.

One soldier said there were hostages on the first and second floor of the two-storey building housing the restaurant.

No terrorist group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. However, the shooting resembles a similar assault in January 2016, when three al Qaeda-linked jihadists killed at least 30 people at Cappuccino Cafe in Ouagadougou before holing up in a nearby hotel. Almost one half of the victims were foreigners.

(AP, Reuters, AFP, dpa)

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