UN urges Burkina Faso coup leaders to lay down arms

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UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday called on coup leaders to lay down their arms, while strongly condemning the attempt to take over government by the force of arms in Burkina Faso.

His statement was made by his Spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric, stating that he was following the progress of the country with serious concern.

He urged the coup leaders to guarantee the protection of the physical integrity of President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré and the institutions of Burkina Faso.

Guterres said he was mostly concerned about the whereabouts and safety of the president who had not been seen since the crisis began early Sunday.

The UN chief expressed concern over the worsening security situation in the country’s capital, Ouagadougou.

Newsmen reports said the military announced on Monday it had seized power and overthrown the president.

The announcement was made on state television by an army officer who cited the deteriorating security situation in the country for the military takeover.

According to news reports, civilians and military elements have voiced growing criticism for months over the ģovernment’s inability to tackle growing Islamist insurgency that has destabilised much of the country.

Guterres reiterated the UN’s full commitment to the preservation of constitutional order in Burkina Faso.

The secretary-general reaffirmed the organisation’s support to the people in their efforts to find solutions to the multifaceted challenges facing the country.

In May 2021 a military coup was staged in Mali and a wave of other coup attempts and takeovers have occurred across West Africa and the Sahel, including in Chad, Sudan and Guinea.

Earlier in the month, the UN Special Representative for West Africa and the Sahel told the Security Council the resurgence “is often the consequence of political practices that are completely out of step with the aspirations of the populations.

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