Bomb Goes Off Killing Dozens

A possible jihadi roadside bomb hit a convoy in northern Burkina Faso last week, killing at least 35 people and injuring dozens more.

A supply convoy, including one vehicle carrying civilians, was being escorted by the army when a suspected jihadi bomb exploded between the towns of Bourzanga and Djibo. The wounded were evacuated and the bomb site secured, according to Lt. Col. Rodolphe Sorgho, the governor of the Sahel region.

Although no group claimed responsibility for the roadside bomb, it is believed to have been carried out by Islamic extremist rebels.

Burkina Faso has been ravaged by attacks linked to al-Qaeda and Islamic State militants in which thousands have been killed.

Last Monday’s bombing was the fifth in Soum province since last month, primarily around Djibo which has been under siege by Islamists for months. In August, a double explosion between the towns of Djibo and Namssiguia killed at least 15 people, according to an internal security report.

In January, the military ousted Burkina Faso’s democratically elected government claiming the military junta was better equipped to secure the country from extremists.

Just one day before last week’s bombing, the country’s interim president, Lt. Col. Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba said in an address to the nation that the military junta had been making progress against the jihadis.

And as the military struggles to secure Burkina Faso from Islamic extremists, the humanitarian crisis in the country has escalated.

Nearly 2 million people have been displaced due to the violence, making Burkina Faso one of the fastest-growing refugee crises in the world alongside Ukraine and Mozambique. Meanwhile, over 600,000 people are facing starvation, making it the country’s worse food crisis in a decade.

According to the Norwegian Refugee Council, hunger often comes when a population is displaced. As people are forced to flee, they leave behind farmland and livestock.

Hassane Hamadou, country director for the Norwegian Refugee Council told the Associated Press that many of the refugees in Burkina Faso are eating only one meal a day so they can provide their children with two meals.