Ouagadougou – Terrorists killed at least 23 people from 18 different countries in an attack that was carried in a luxury hotel in the capital of Burkina Faso. According to authorities, forces from the country and French officials have killed four extremists, who opened fire on Friday night. More than 126 people who were trapped in the hotel have been freed.
President Roch Marc Christian Kabore said that the attack that took place at the Splendid Hotel was carried by four jihadists, including two women. Three of them were killed at the facility, which is commonly visited by diplomats, and the fourth was killed in a different hotel.
According to local media from Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, terrorist group Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, claimed responsibility for the attack. Later, it was found in a Telegram account named Muslim Africa an Arabic message which said that attackers broke into the hotel and fought against the enemies of religion, as SITE reported. However, the information has not been confirmed by authorities.
Separately, two Australians were kidnapped in the north of Burkina Faso the same night. A spokeswoman from the security ministry, Abi Ouattara, said that a doctor and his wife who were volunteers were taken by extremists. Authorities from Australia have said that they will quickly investigate details about the kidnapping.
On Saturday morning, it was confirmed by the Minister of Security of Internal Affairs Simon Compaore, that approximately 33 people were wounded as a consequence of the attack, and half of the 126 hostages have been hospitalized.
“Everyone was panicked and was lying down on the floor. There was blood everywhere, they were shooting at people at point blank,” said Yannick Sawadogo, who escaped through a window, to CNN reporters. “We could hear them talking and they were walking around and kept shooting at people who seemed alive,” Sawadogo added.
It was announced that The United States and France offered support to security forces at Ouagadougou. An official said to NY Times that military personnel from the U.S. provided reconnaissance help and surveillance.
French President Francois Hollande incriminated the attack as “odious and coward,” on the other hand, the U.S. embassy declared that it was a “senseless assault on innocent people.” It is considered that Burkina Faso could be an important ally to fight Al-Qaeda, since the nation elected a new leader after being governed by the autocrat Blaise Compaore, for 27 years.
Source: NY Times