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World Burkina Faso votes under looming threat of violence

04:40  22 november  2020
04:40  22 november  2020 Source:   reuters.com

Burkina Faso counts ballots; extremist threats affected vote

  Burkina Faso counts ballots; extremist threats affected vote OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — Votes are being counted in Burkina Faso after Sunday’s presidential and legislative elections, where threats of extremist violence linked to al-Qaida and the Islamic State prevented parts of the country from casting ballots. Election workers began the counting after polls closed by holding up the ballots up for observers and marking the votes on a chalkboard beside the candidate's name. Preliminary results are expected within the next two days.While there were no reported incidents of major attacks, threats of violence prevented people from casting ballots in hard-hit parts of the country, in the North, Sahel and East regions.

Burkina Faso goes to the polls on Sunday. The threat of extremist violence could prevent people from casting their votes on the day as the As night falls on Burkina Faso 's capital, Ouagadougou, Sore Ouesseni sits on a wooden bench, relaxing with some friends in front of his store in the Ouidi district.

able to vote in Burkina Faso 's presidential election on Sunday carries her seven months daughter Once a pocket of calm in a turbulent region, landlocked Burkina Faso has been sucked into a "I cannot vote for the president," said Tapsoba Ali, 33. "It is under his regime that there have been all

By Edward McAllister

a man and a woman sitting on a motorcycle: Electoral workers transport ballot boxes on their motorcycles as they arrive to prepare a polling station ahead of the presidential and legislative elections, in Ouagadougou, © Reuters/ZOHRA BENSEMRA Electoral workers transport ballot boxes on their motorcycles as they arrive to prepare a polling station ahead of the presidential and legislative elections, in Ouagadougou,

OUAGADOUGOU (Reuters) - Burkina Faso heads to the polls on Sunday in an election dominated by jihadist violence, which has cost over 2,000 lives this year and will prevent voting in hundreds of villages.

President Roch Kaboré is seeking a second five-year term, campaigning on achievements including free healthcare for children under the age of five, and paving some of the red dirt roads that snake across the arid West African country.

Burkina Faso to vote in shadow of jihadist threat

  Burkina Faso to vote in shadow of jihadist threat Burkina Faso will vote in a general election Sunday in the shadow of a growing jihadist insurgency, with President Roch Marc Christian Kabore expected to win re-election. Emmanuel Macron -- president of Burkina Faso's former colonial ruler France, which has troops in the country -- waded into the debate on Friday, ruling out negotiating with jihadist groups in the Sahel. "We don't talk with terrorists. We fight," he said in an interview.- Volunteer militias -One of Kabore's efforts has been the creation earlier this year of volunteer militias supervised by the state, called Volunteers for the Defence of the Nation (VDP).

Entire families are fleeing the violence in Burkina Faso . Photograph: Norwegian Refugee Council. A landlocked nation of 19 million people in the heart of west Africa, Burkina Faso was celebrated only a The success of the armed groups is not just down to an under -resourced Burkinabè army – now

Burkina Faso has been battling armed groups linked to Islamic extremists since 2017, however the identities of those behind the weekend's attacks are disputed. Violence linked to Islamic extremists, and the local defence groups and military fighting them, is surging across the West African country.

But a surge in attacks by groups with links to the militant groups al Qaeda and Islamic State has eclipsed everything else. Three weeks after his inauguration, al Qaeda’s regional branch attacked a hotel and a cafe in the capital, killing 32 people; an ambush on mine workers in the east last year killed 39.

a person wearing a costume: An electoral worker carries a ballot box as she prepares a polling station ahead of the presidential and legislative elections, in Ouagadougou © Reuters/ZOHRA BENSEMRA An electoral worker carries a ballot box as she prepares a polling station ahead of the presidential and legislative elections, in Ouagadougou

"I like Kaboré , but he hasn't managed the security situation. The north has been forgotten, there is no government authority there," said Tiadiane Bonkoungou, who sells blankets and drapes at a market stall in Ouagadougou.

Kaboré faces stiff opposition from former finance minister Zephirin Diabré, the runner-up in 2015, and Eddie Komboigo, who runs the party of Blaise Campaoré, the president of 27 years who was overthrown in 2014. Analysts expect a tight race that could go to a second round if no candidate wins more than 50%.

Provisional results of the first round are expected by midweek.

In a press conference on Saturday, Diabré said that the president was orchestrating "massive fraud" ahead of the vote, without providing evidence.

The electoral commission says polling stations will remain shut across much of the north and east for fear of violence.

At least 400,000 people - nearly 7% of the electorate - will be unable to cast their votes, official data show.

(Reporting By Edward McAllister; Editing by Bate Felix and Kevin Liffey)

Burkina Faso goes to the polls in shadow of jihadist threat .
The people of Burkina Faso began voting in a general election Sunday in the shadow of a growing jihadist insurgency, and with opposition candidates warning of a "massive fraud" at the polls. President Roch Marc Christian Kabore is expected to win re-election, his supporters talking up his chances of an outright victory in the first round of voting. But no votes in the presidential and parliamentary polls will be cast in one-fifth of the country, where large swathes remain outside the state's control and jihadist attacks strike almost daily.

usr: 1
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