"Coup" in Burkina Faso condemned

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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (right) meets with Michel Kafando, President of Burkina Faso, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 30 January 2015. UN File Photo/Eskinder Debebe

A reported coup by the presidential guard in Burkina Faso has been strongly condemned by the UN.

The UN Security Council and Secretary-General have expressed outrage over the detention of President Michel Kafando, Prime Minister Isaac Zida and several ministers in the West African nation's capital, Ouagadougou.

The arrest of the leaders of the interim government comes just weeks before elections aimed at ushering in a new era of democracy.

Siobhán Garside reports.

In separate statements, the UN Secretary-General and the 15 members of the Security Council condemned the power seizure by the presidential guard in Burkina Faso.

Ban Ki-moon and the Council called for the immediate release of President Michel Kafando, Prime Minister Isaac Zida and several ministers that were arrested on Wednesday in Ouagadougou, the West African nation's capital.

On Thursday, the military took to the airwaves to declare it now controls the country, confirming a coup has taken place just weeks before elections aimed at ushering in a new era of democracy.

The events have been condemned by the international community.

The UN said the incident is a flagrant violation of the Burkina Faso's constitution and transitional charter.

The organization has stood firmly behind the transitional authorities and president Kafando and urged all actors to comply with the election calendar.

The transitional government came to power after President Blaise Compaore was ousted in a popular uprising late last year that was sparked by his bid to prolong his 27-year rule.

Siobhán Garside, United Nations.

Duration: 1’10″

 

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