Burkina Faso Refutes HRW Claims of Massacre as ‘Unfounded’ | Latest Human Rights Developments


A recent Human Rights Watch report accused the military in Burkina Faso of executing residents in the villages of Nodin and Soro, including at least 56 children. The report alleged that soldiers killed at least 223 villagers in two attacks on February 25, as part of a campaign against civilians accused of collaborating with rebel fighters. The report was based on telephone interviews with witnesses, civil society, and others.

In response, Burkina Faso’s government denied the accusations, calling them “baseless”. The Communications Minister stated that the killings in Nodin and Soro have led to a legal inquiry, and criticized HRW for jumping to conclusions before the inquiry is complete.

HRW described the massacre as one of the worst army abuses in Burkina Faso since 2015, stating that the killings may amount to crimes against humanity. They called for an urgent investigation into the massacres, with support from the African Union and the United Nations.

The Burkina Faso government defended its military, stating that all reports of human rights violations are subject to investigations. They also suspended the BBC and Voice of America radio networks from broadcasting after they aired the report accusing the army of attacks on civilians in the fight against rebels.

The violence in Burkina Faso, fueled by conflicts with armed groups linked to al-Qaeda and ISIS, has worsened since the military takeovers in Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger from 2020 to 2023. In 2023, Burkina Faso saw a severe escalation of deadly attacks, with over 8,000 people reportedly killed according to the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project.


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