January 15th 2016, Ouagadougou: In the capital city of Burkina Faso, gunmen fired on innocent civilians in both the Cappuccino restaurant and the Splendid Hotel. There were 30 casualties of this brutal attack, with a further 56 wounded. Of the casualties, six were Canadian humanitarian workers. Their mission was on behalf of the Congrégation des sœurs de Notre-Dame du Perpétuel Secours, which is a religious congregation. Al-Qaeda has claimed responsibility, saying that the act was a “revenge against France and the disbelieving West.” According to some eye-witness accounts, the group of six attackers were light skinned men. Others have claimed that two of the six were women. As of January 22nd, three of the attackers are dead and the other three are on the run.
After the attack on the hotel, President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré and Prime Minister Paul Kaba Thieba kicked into immediate action. The president held an emergency cabinet meeting to address the attack, while the prime minister went to the Splendid Hotel to evaluate the damages. On the international level, the French embassy claimed that this was a “terrorist attack” and urged its citizens to stay low until the acts had passed. The US and British embassies issued warnings to their citizens as well. The leaders of several countries commented on the brutality of the attack, saying that they have no tolerance for terrorism. Many other West African nations such as Ghana and Nigeria have increased their domestic security for the safety of their people.
For more information on the attacks here are a few links: