Ouagadougou: The Burkina Faso army said Sunday that they had killed 32 ‘terrorists’ in two operations in the north of the country after an attack on a patrol.
One soldier was killed in the operations, which come less than a month after 37 people were killed in an ambush on a convoy transporting employees of a Canadian mining company.
The army said 24 people were killed in the first operation Friday and a further eight in a second strike Saturday.
The first operation in Yorsala in Loroum province saw a number of women who ‘had been held and used by the terrorists as sex slaves’ freed.
Arms, ammunition and other materials were also recovered in the second operation on the outskirts of Bourzanga in Bam province, the army statement added.
The impoverished and politically fragile Sahel country has been struggling to quell a rising jihadist revolt which has claimed hundreds of lives since early 2015.
The attacks — typically hit-and-run raids on villages, road mines and suicide bombings — have claimed nearly 700 lives across the country since early 2015. Almost 500,000 people have also been forced to flee their homes.
The attacks have been claimed by a range of jihadist groups, including Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State.
The Sahel region, including Burkina Faso’s neighbours Mali and Niger, has been afflicted by the violence despite the presence of the regional G5 Sahel force as well as French and US troops.