Burkina Faso Foreign Minister Alpha Barry made a statement to the press regarding the French military convoy, which caused the reaction of the people of the region and was stopped during its passage from the city of Kaya, 100 kilometers from the capital Vagadugu, on November 18.
Barry said that there was no abnormality in the convoy trying to reach the French base in Gao, Mali via Niger, and that French military convoys had passed through Burkina Faso before.
Called for calm
Reminding that there is friendship and cooperation between France and Burkina Faso, Barry noted that the French soldiers did not carry weapons to terrorist groups as alleged, and that the government was aware of the passage of the convoy. Barry, calling for calm and common sense to the people of the region, underlined that in accordance with the agreements between the two countries, 20 French military convoys have passed through the country in recent years.
“Do not confuse the enemy”
Emphasizing that he understands the anger of the people because of the terrorist attacks in the country last week, Barry said, “We should not confuse the enemy. France has always been on our side in the fight against terrorism.”
Internet outage will continue for 96 more hours
On the other hand, it was announced that the mobile internet interruption, which started on 20 November due to the convoy crisis and was stated to last for 96 hours, will continue for 96 hours starting from 20.00 on 24 November local time.
In a written statement made by the Ministry of Communications, it was noted that mobile internet will be out of use for another 96 hours due to “national defense and public security”. In the statement, it was emphasized that the fixed internet service would not be affected by the interruption.
The convoy of 60 trucks and 100 soldiers, which set off from Ivory Coast and first aimed to go to Niger’s capital Niamey and then to Gao city of Mali, was stopped by the locals in Kaya city of Burkina Faso on 18 November. The people of the region, who believed that the convoy carrying logistics equipment was helping terrorist groups, blocked the convoy and prevented its passage.
The convoy, which was not allowed to move for about 72 hours, left the country on the night connecting 20 November to 21 November. During this time, the people of the region took to the streets to protest the presence of France in the region. At least 3 people were injured by the fire opened in the air to disperse the crowd and allow the convoy to pass.