Gunmen hit Burkina Faso church, kill four

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Gunmen burst into a church in northern Burkina Faso and shot dead four people, a security source said – the fourth attack on Christians in the past month.

Other worshippers were wounded in the assault on the morning service at the church near Titao, the source added.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attacks which threaten to upend traditionally peaceful relations between the Muslim majority and Christians who make up a quarter of Burkinabes.

Government blames unnamed terrorist groups operating in the country and Africa’s surrounding Sahel region.

Islamist militants in Mali regrouped after a French intervention in 2013 and now use the country’s north and centre as launching pads for attacks on Burkina Faso and Niger.

Gunmen killed a Protestant pastor and five congregants in another church in northern Burkina late in April. A Catholic priest and five parishioners were killed in an attack in Dablo on May 12 and another four Catholics died in an attack two days later in Ouahigouya.