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Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso, which means land of the upright people, is a West African country located south of the Niger Arc and bordered by Mali, Niger, Benin, Togo, Ghana and the Ivory Coast. The country gained its independence on August 5, 1960. Until August 4, 1984, the name Upper Volta, which it received during its time as a French colony, was used.
For several years, Burkina Faso has been caught in a spiral of violence attributed to various armed jihadist groups. Some are affiliated with Al Qaeda, others with the Islamic State group. The attacks (raids on villages and police stations) are now violent across the country. The Burkinabe army is working hard to combat and stop this violence.

Country information

The administrative and cultural capital of the country, which has around 21 million inhabitants, is the centrally located megacity of Ouagadougou. The predominantly flat landlocked country with shares in the Greater Sudan and the Sahel zone is characterized by a tropical climate and diverse savannah landscapes. About half of the Burkinabe (Burkinabe) belong to the politically dominant Mossi ethnic group, who lived in several strictly hierarchically organized kingdoms until they were colonized by France at the end of the 19th century. About 60 native languages are spoken in Burkina Faso. Islam is the most widely practiced religion (60.5%) Christians (23.2%) and Animists (15.3%). Burkina Faso is one of the poorest countries in the world, but today it is characterized by the cultural diversity of the ethnic groups living peacefully together.

Among other things, Burkina Faso hosts the pan-African film festival FESPACO, which takes place every two years.

Adansonia_grandidieri04 Quelle Wikipedia.jpg

Baobab (Quelle: Wikipedia)

Political Situation

In January 2022, a military junta deposed the president, who had been democratically elected in 2015, allegedly because of insufficient resources to combat terrorism. The junta initially received a certain amount of support from the people, who are suffering from the insecure situation, the many displaced people in their own country, significant inflation and a stagnating economy.

There was another coup in 2023, with worrying results. Ibraim Traoré, the new ruler, has replaced the French force that had been fighting against the Islamic State with Russian mercenaries. The new president had several meetings with Putin and there is even talk of a nuclear power plant in Burkina Faso. Freedom of the press is severely restricted and several local radio stations have been closed.

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