Priest Among Six Killed In Burkina Faso Church Attack

Clay Curtis
May 14, 2019

Militants killed six people and razed a church during mass at Dablo, a northern town, in Burkina Faso, on Sunday, officials said.

The attackers then torched the church, and set fire to a shop and two vehicles, in the second attack on Christians in as many weeks in a nation increasingly overrun by jihadis.

The attack happened in the northern village of Dablo, located not far from the volatile border with Mali.

Around 4.3 million people have been driven from their homes in the worsening violence that has engulfed the entire Sahel region, including one million over the past year, according to United Nations humanitarian officials.

Last month, gunmen attacked a Protestant church in the town of Silgdji in the north of the country.

Jihadist groups target both Muslim and Christian clerics, mainly in the north.

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It is believed the four - two French citizens kidnapped in Benin, a South Korean and an American - were being driven to Mali to be handed over to the militant group, Katiba Macina.

"Towards 9:00am, during mass, armed individuals burst into the Catholic Church", the mayor of Dablo, Ousmane Zongo, told AFP. The pastor was among those killed in the raid in the small town of Silgadji. At least two other people are missing'.

Fighters affiliated to al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group as well as the local Ansarul Islam have been active in the region. At least six people were killed, and a priest was among those who died.

On Friday, French special forces carried out a rescue mission in northern Burkina Faso, freeing four hostages.

Germany will give an additional €20 million to Burkina Faso and over €35 million to Niger ($22.4 million and $39 million, respectively) to support development projects as well as the outfitting and training of police officers in each country, she said.

The landlocked country in northwest Africa has been beset by extremist violence in recent months as Islamist terror groups expand their reach.

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