Burkina Faso’s junta has officially ended the French military mission in the West African country, the military announced Sunday.
It thus brought to an end the 2018 military accord that Burkina Faso reached with France which allowed French troops to help fight insurgents in the country.
In a statement, the army said the General Staff of the Burkinabe Armed Forces said it had taken part with the commander of France’s Sabre special forces in “a solemn ceremony of lowering flags marking the official end of the operations of the Task Force from Burkinabe soil.”
The event took place on Saturday at Camp Bila Zagre in Kamboincin, northeast of the capital Ouagadougou.
The ceremony was presided over by Col. Adam Nere, the chief of staff of Burkina Faso’s army, and Lt. Col. Louis Lecacheur, who represented the commander of France’s Sabre special forces, according to the statement.
Relations between France and Burkina Faso have soured since the September 2022 military coup.
Last month, amid the deteriorating relations, Burkina Faso said it had decided to end the military pact because it is in line with the transition government’s vision for the Burkinabe to defend their country.
Several demonstrations have been reported against the French military presence in the country on perceptions that it has been ineffective against the terrorism that has been raging in the country since 2015.
In December, authorities in Burkina Faso also demanded the replacement of the French ambassador, Luc Hallade.
Following the formal request, the French Foreign Ministry said on Jan. 26 that it was recalling its ambassador to Burkina Faso for consultations in “the context of recent developments.”
A day earlier, Paris announced that it had agreed to demands from the military junta to pull out troops from its former colony within a month.
France maintained about 400 special forces in the country, which were deployed to help local forces battle insurgents linked to the al-Qaeda and Daesh/ISIS terrorist organizations.
Leave a Reply