Reports have surfaced that Burkina Faso’s interim President Michel Kafando and Prime Minister Yacouba Isaac Zida were detained by soldiers today in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso.

Yacouba Isaac Zida, initially chosen by the military to lead Burkina Faso; later became Prime Minister

Achille Tapsoba, a source in the Office of the President, told the Associated Press that soldiers showed up in the presidential office late Wednesday and prevented President Kafando and Prime Minister Zida from leaving.

The two leaders were tasked to organize the October 11th elections of this year.

The Burkina Faso had initially appointed Zida as head of state after they removed former President Blaise Compaore in a coup last year. However, the military back down after international pressure and appointed Michel Kafando as President. President Kafando used to be the Burkina Faso Ambassador to the United Nations.

Jeff Smith, the Africa Policy Director at the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Human Rights, stated that “today's events in Burkina Faso, which comes nearly one year after last October's mass protests, may very likely be the result of the recent shake-up within the country's presidential security.” He added that “its is believed that Zida maintains strong support in some sectors of the country's ruling apparatus, and perhaps this is a political power play orchestrated by him and his supporters.”

You may also like

Read Next