Death Toll Rises to 160 People Killed in Burkina Faso After Attack on Village that Left Homes Burned Down - Pope says "Africa needs peace..."
An attack by armed men on a village in the African country of Burkina Faso has left 160 people dead. The army in Burkina Faso has been struggling to contain militant violence according to the BBC News. The killing of at least 160 people is one of the country's worst attacks in recent years.
At the Angelus on Sunday, Pope Francis said, “I am close to their families and to the entire Burkinabé people who are suffering greatly from these repeated attacks. Africa needs peace and not violence”.
Homes and the local market were burned during the raid on Solhan on Saturday, June 6th, 2021. Although, no group has claimed responsibility, extremist Islamist attacks are increasingly common in the country. The UN chief said he was "outraged" by the incident.
António Guterres "strongly condemns the heinous attack and underscores the urgent need for the international community to redouble support to member states in the fight against violent extremism and its unacceptable human toll," his spokesperson said.
On Sunday, a total of 160 bodies were recovered from what local officials in Solhan described as three mass graves, AFP news agency reported. The number of people killed in Solhan has increased from earlier reports of about 132 deaths, and there are concerns that the death toll may rise further.
The Burkinabe President Roch Kabore declared three days of national mourning, writing in a tweet that "we must stand united against the forces of evil". He described the attack as "barbaric" and said that security forces were trying to track down the perpetrators. Critical stage for fight against jihadis in West Africa. Last month, 30 people died in an attack in the east of Burkina Faso. The country is facing a deepening security crisis, like many of its neighbours, as armed groups carry out raids and kidnappings across much of the region. The security forces are struggling to prevent the violence that has forced more than a million people from their homes over the past two years. French forces have been supporting troops from Mali, Chad, Mauritania, Niger and Burkina Faso to fight the militants.
Edited from BBC News and Vatican News