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Burkina Faso Tops 2023 Global Terrorism Deaths – Report

In 2023, terrorist-related deaths in Burkina Faso accounted for nearly a quarter of all terrorist deaths globally making it the first time in 13 years since a country other than Afghanistan or Iraq has been top of the index.

Burkina Faso has been ranked number one on the Global Terrorism Index (GTI) with about 2,000 people being killed from terrorist attacks in 258 incidents, a new GTI report has shown.

Produced by the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP), the report indicates that terrorist-related deaths in Burkina Faso accounted for nearly a quarter of all terrorist deaths globally making it the first time in 13 years since a country other than Afghanistan or Iraq has been top of the index.

Even more troubling is that although Israel suffered the largest terrorist attack in 2023, it
was not the country most impacted by terrorism.

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In a recent interview with AllAfrica.com, Thom Morgan (TM), Associate Research Director at the Institute for Economics and Peace said there is a shift in terrorism activities from the Middle East and North Africa into Sub-Saharan Africa.

” And more broadly, in the Sahel region, we see that accounts for almost 50% of deaths from terrorism. So you’ve seen an increase in the sort of switch in the epicenter of terrorism out of the Middle East, and North Africa, and into Sub-Saharan Africa,” he said.

The impact of terrorism in Burkina Faso has increased every year since 2014, with terrorism also surging in its neighbouring countries, Mali and Niger. In Burkina Faso in
2023, deaths from terrorism were up 68 per cent, even though attacks decreased by 17 per cent, the report states.

Burkina Faso’s Situation

In 2021, Human Rights Watch noted that there was a significant deterioration in Burkina Faso’s human rights and security situation due to the rise in attacks and atrocities by armed Islamist groups.

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The situation did not improve until a coup d’état took place on January  24, 2022. Burkina Faso’s army, led by Paul-Henri Damiba, announced it had deposed President Roch Kabore after more than six years in power, following several days of unrest in the capital Ouagadougou.

Damiba’s reign did not last. He was removed from office by another coup on September 30 by army Captain Ibrahim Traore for failing to deal with an uprising and Islamist insurgency in the country. Damida’s reason for staging the January coup was to unite the country and control the deteriorating security situation.

 

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