Unidentified militants reportedly killed at least three people across Est region on Wednesday afternoon (local time), April 17. Local sources claim gunmen dressed in military or gendarmerie fatigues attacked the village of Diabatou, killing three, while residents of Dagou and Yeritagui allegedly fled to Matiakoali following a raid by unknown militants at a nearby school. It is not immediately known if the attacks are related. Similar militant attacks are likely in Est region over the near term.
Unidentified militants also opened fire on a market in Boulmontchangou (Tapoa province) on April 17. There were no immediate reports of casualties.
Burkina Faso declared a state of emergency for the country's border regions, including in Est region, on January 1.
Terrorism has become an increasingly severe security threat in Burkina Faso since 2015. Educational institutions, local government officials, and security forces are specifically targeted. Initially concentrated in the Sahel region, attacks have spread to other regions, including eastern Burkina Faso (Est region), which is also known for high crime rates. Attacks are typically attributed to Ansarul Islam and other groups affiliated with Al-Qa'ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).
Individuals in Burkina Faso are advised to monitor developments to the security situation in northern Burkina Faso, adhere to applicable regulations (e.g. state of emergency orders), and remain vigilant for criminal and militant activity.
Due to the severe threats of terrorism and kidnapping, individuals present in Burkina Faso - including the capital Ouagadougou - are strongly advised to be discreet regarding personal details, particularly information concerning nationality, employment, family, etc. Individuals are also advised to avoid public events and places frequented by Westerners, to remain vigilant at all times, and to report any suspicious objects or behavior to the authorities.
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