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UN urges Burkina Faso army to relinquish power to civilians, threatens sanctions

united nations 

by Joseph Earnest November 3, 2014   


Newscast Media OUAGADOUGOU—A United Nations envoy has urged a civilian transition of power in Burkina Faso, threatening sanctions against the West African country unless the army gives up power.

“We hope there will be a transition led by a civilian and in keeping with the constitutional order,” the UN envoy for West Africa, Mohamed Ibn Chambas, said on Sunday, adding, “If not, the consequences are pretty clear. We want to avoid having to impose sanctions on Burkina Faso.”

The comments come a day after the military top brass named Lieutenant Colonel Yacouba Isaac Zida, the deputy commander of the elite presidential guard, to lead the country’s transition.

On Friday, President Blaise Compaoré was forced to resign following two days of mass protests against his attempts to change the constitution to extend his rule for a fifth term.

Chambas was speaking on behalf of a tripartite group of mediators, including representatives of the African Union and the Economic Community of West African States, after they met with Zida and Burkina Faso’s top military brass.

The UN official further stated they “assured us that they had well understood the message.”

Under Burkina Faso’s constitution, the speaker of parliament should serve as transitional leader.

A group of opposition parties and civil society organizations issued a statement on Saturday, warning Burkina Faso’s army against a seizure of power and called for a mass protest rally in the capital Ouagadougou on Sunday.

Burkina Faso gained independence from France in 1960 and changed its name in 1984 to the current one, which means "the land of upright men." Add Comments>>

 Source: Press TV









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