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Army promises unity government as thousands protest in Burkina Faso

© Issouf Sanogo, AFP. Lieutenant Colonel Yacouba Isaac Zida in Ougadougou, Ocotber 31.

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-11-03

Thousands of protesters gathered Sunday in Burkina Faso’s capital to protest what they say was a military coup, prompting the army to announce the creation of a unity government. One person was killed when gunfire erupted at state TV headquarters.

"A transition body will be put in place with all the components to be adopted by a broad consensus," according to a statement read out by an aide to Lieutenant Colonel Isaac Zida, who is serving as interim head of state.

"Power does not interest us, only the greater interest of the nation," the army statement said.

A recap of Sunday's events in Burkina Faso:

  • Thousands of demonstrators gathered at Ouagadougou’s Place de la Nation to answer opposition calls to protest what they called a military coup, a day after Lieutenant Colonel Zida proclaimed himself head of state.
  • One person was killed near the TV station when soldiers fired into the air to disperse protesters. The army said the victim was likely hit by a stray bullet. Soldiers promptly seized control of the state TV and radio stations.
  • Amid signs of a power struggle among opposition politicians, General Kouame Lougue went on air to proclaim himself the new leader of Burkina Faso, according to news reports. A former defence minister who fell out with deposed Burkinabe president Blaise Compaore, Lougue is widely believed to enjoy the support of many protesters on the street.
  • Opposition politician Saran Sereme, head of the PDC party, and about 100 of her supporters arrived at the TV station chanting, "Saran President".
  • Veteran opposition leader Zephirin Diabre issued a statement saying that the self-declared “presidents” of the transition speak in a personal capacity and that their claims do not reflect a binding decision by a united opposition.
  • Transition leader Zida held a meeting with opposition leaders in the capital of Ouagadougou but no details of the talks have been disclosed.

See below for FRANCE 24's live coverage of the day's events. If you are using a mobile or tablet, click here. If you have any problems viewing the liveblog, please press F5.

Live Blog Power struggle in Burkina Faso

Date created : 2014-11-02

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