Sixteen killed in Burkina Faso jihadist attack


Suspected jihadists killed 16 villagers in northern Burkina Faso, an incident highlighting the increased presence of Sahel-based Islamists in the area, local and security sources said.

The gunmen came to Pobe-Mengao, north of Ouagadougou, threatening to take away children and telling villagers to help them buy weapons, a security source told Reuters.

When they refused, they were shot dead, the sources said. A security source told Reuters the death toll was 16.

An Islamist insurgency with links to Islamic State and al Qaeda crossed into Burkina Faso this year from neighbouring Mali, igniting ethnic and religious tensions, especially in northern regions.

Attacks by Islamist militants as well as clashes between herding and farming communities have surged, killing hundreds of civilians and soldiers in a country once a pocket of relative calm in the Sahel.

Government did not immediately comment on the killings.