Shots were fired near the private home of Burkina Faso’s president in the capital Ouagadougou late Sunday, residents told AFP.
Soldiers in several barracks mutinied to demand more money for the fight against Islamist insurgents.
President Roch Marc Christian Kabore’s neighborhood was also seen from above by a helicopter that had its lights turned off. The gunfire, which started out very loud and then became more and more sporadic, could be heard at first.
A lot of people living in the capital heard a lot of gunfire at the same time in the military camps in Sangoule Lamizana and Baba Sy.
Soldiers went on strike in several barracks across the country on Sunday, including those of Sangoule Lamizan and Baba Sy. They wanted the army chiefs to be fired and “enough resources” to fight Islamist extremists in the country.
AFP journalists say that during the day, protesters backed the mutineers and set up roadblocks in several parts of the capital. They were then taken away by the police.
Burned and looted: Protesters were angry about how the government was handling the jihadist threat.
“Until further notice,” the government put in place an overnight curfew starting at 8 pm (2000 GMT) on Monday and Tuesday across the poor landlocked country. The education ministry said schools would be closed Monday and Tuesday across the country.
The government quickly denied rumors that there was a coup, and a list of demands from the rebellious troops didn’t mention trying to get rid of Kabore. They also said that the country needs a better strategy to fight jihadists.
A soldier from the Sangoule Lamizana base said in a voice recording that “we want enough resources for the fight against Islamist extremists.”
Spokesman: The disgruntled soldiers also want top generals to be “replaced,” better care for injured troops, and more support for the families of soldiers killed in battle.
In the last week, 12 people have been arrested on suspicion of planning to “destabilize” Burkina Faso’s institutions. This comes a little more than a week after that.
There were also protests that were banned, and police used tear gas to break them up, arresting many people.
Unconfirmed reports from #BurkinaFaso that a coup has taken place, with the President arrested and replaced by an army colonel
Heavy gunfire has been reported around the presidential palace & a helicopter is said to have been hovering overhead
— Gareth Barlow (@GarethBarlow) January 24, 2022