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Burkina Faso elite unit refuses to disarm after coup

By News Express on 29/09/2015

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Burkina Faso’s powerful presidential guard is resisting efforts to disarm it after carrying out a short-lived coup against a transitional government this month, the army’s chief of staff said on Monday.

The government, restored to power by popular protests and international pressure, disbanded the Presidential Security Regiment (RSP) on Friday after it had arrested the president, taken the prime minister hostage and named General Gilbert Diendere as head of state.

The coup, which lasted just over a week, spurred waves of protests throughout the landlocked West African country, during which at least 11 people were killed and 271 injured.

A released statement explained that, “The disarmament process ... has found itself at an impasse since Sunday Sept. 27, 2015, marked by the refusal of officers from the former Presidential Security Regiment to follow disarmament.”

Members of the presidential guarded have “started incidents"” and intimidated personnel in charge of the disarmament mission, said the statement, which also accused General Diendere of behaving “ambiguously.”

Transitional President Michel Kafando formed a commission to identify people to be prosecuted for the attempted putsch.

The government has also frozen the assets of Diendere and 13 others suspected of ties to the coup or political parties linked to former president Blaise Compaore.

Diendere, Compaore’s former right-hand man and spy chief, said he led the coup because of plans to disband the elite guard and exclude Compaore allies from participation in upcoming presidential elections, originally scheduled for Oct. 11. (Reuters)

•Photo shows Kafando

Source News Express

Posted 29/09/2015 05:24:23 AM


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