Captain Ibrahim Traore has been appointed as president of Burkina Faso after Paul-Henri Damiba was removed in the West African country’s second coup in less than nine months.
The Sahel country plunged into political turmoil on September 30 after a group of officers decided to remove Damiba due to his inability to deal with a worsening armed uprising, dissolved the transitional government and suspended the constitution.
According to an official statement read out on national television by a spokesman for the military government, Captain Kiswendsida Sorgho, Traore has been appointed as “Head of State, Supreme Head of the Armed Forces adding that Traore would now be the “guarantor of national independence, territorial integrity… and continuity of the State”.
Burkina is struggling with a seven-year-old jihadist campaign that has claimed thousands of lives, forced nearly two million people to flee their homes and left more than a third of the country outside government control.
Swelling anger within the armed forces prompted Damiba’s coup against the elected president in January.
Appointing himself transitional head of state, Damiba had vowed to make security the country’s top priority — but after a brief lull the attacks revived, claiming hundreds of lives.