Burkinabe soldiers block entrance to eastern town


Soldiers in eastern Burkina Faso fired shots into the air and blocked the entrance to the town of Fada-Ngourma residents said, the second protest by soldiers in the country in less than a week.

Unrest in Fada-Ngourma on Monday followed a night of gunfire in the capital Ouagadougou, some 230 km (143 miles) to the west, last week in what a military source said was a protest by soldiers over the arrest of a colleague.

Burkina Faso is a poor, land-locked West African nation but, over the last few decades under the tight rule of President Blaise Compaore, it has been spared the unrest and conflicts of many of its neighbours, reuters reports.

There was no official comment from the government on the latest disturbance. But residents said the soldiers had freed a colleague from prison where had been accused of raping a minor, and were waiting to speak to officers sent from the capital.
“They have blocked the entrance to the town from the (west) with tanks,” said one resident who, like others contacted, asked not to be named.
“They say they are waiting for the delegation from Ouagadougou and if is not a general, they will not speak to him,” the resident said, adding that the military were requisitioning pick-ups in the town.

The unrest last week lasted just a few hours. About a dozen people were reported injured.

Burkina Faso closed its universities this month after protests over the death of a student following a spell in police custody. Six people died and public buildings were torched in the student demonstrations.