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Seven Children Among 14 Civilians Killed in Roadside Bomb in Burkina Faso

Seven children and four women were among 14 civilians killed when a roadside bomb blew up their bus in northwestern , said the country’s government.

According to a security source, the explosion happened in Sourou province near the Mali border as children returned to school after the Christmas holidays.

“The provisional toll is 14 dead,” a statement said, adding that 19 more people were hurt; three of them seriously in Saturday’s blast.

Sources told AFP that the vehicle hit a homemade bomb on the Toeni-Tougan road.

“The government strongly condemns this cowardly and barbaric act,” the statement said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack however, jihadist violence in Burkina Faso has been blamed on militants linked to both Al-Qaeda and Islamic State groups.

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Meanwhile the army reported an assault against gendarmes at Inata in the north on Friday, saying “a dozen terrorists were neutralized.”

This came a week after 35 people, most of them women, were massacred in an attack on the northern city of Arbinda and seven Burkinabe troops were killed in a separate attack on their army base.

The country has seen frequent terrorist attacks which have left hundreds dead since 2015 when Islamist extremist violence began to spread across the Sahel region.

President Roch Marc Christian Kabore in a televised address on Tuesday insisted that victory against terrorism was assured.

The entire Sahel region is fighting a jihadist insurgency with help from Western countries, but has not managed to stem the bloodshed.

Increasingly deadly Islamist attacks in Burkina have killed more than 750 people since 2015, according to an AFP count, and forced 560,000 people from their homes, U.N. figures show.

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Written by How Africa

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