The president of Burkina Faso has been asked by France to help intervene after a human barricade of protesters opposed to Paris’ role in a regional conflict with jihadist stopped a convoy of French troops in the Sahel country en route to Niger on Friday.
Speaking to LCI television, Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said that “manipulators” were stoking anti-French sentiment, but he hoped the Burkinabe authorities would act to find a solution.
“We’ve made it clear to President (Roch) Kabore that we’d like him to resolve the situation in Kaya and I think it will be resolved,” Le Drian said.
Anger is rising in the former French colony over the inability of Burkinabe and international forces to prevent rising violence by Islamist militants.
State security forces suffered their heaviest loss in years on November 14 when gunmen killed 49 military police officers and four civilians.
“It’s a little tense because of internal reasons, but also external because there are influencers who are leading an information war,” Le Drian said.