Failed coup, Burkina Faso

This item appears on page 61 of the November 2015 issue.

Members of the Presidential Guard loyal to ousted president Blaise Compaoré briefly held the acting president and prime minister of Burkina Faso hostage on Sept. 17 after the interim government suggested that the Guard be disbanded and that allies of the former president be restricted from running for office in the October elections. The Guard killed at least 10 civilians in the capital, Ouagadougou, who were protesting the Presidential Guards’ attempted coup.

The Guard ended the coup on Sept. 22 after the regular army entered Ouagadougou in support of the interim government. The president and prime minister were reinstated the next day, and the previously scheduled Oct. 11 elections, being held to create a permanent government, were restored. On Oct. 1, the leader of the Presidential Guard was turned over to Burkina Faso authorities by the Vatican embassy, where he had sought asylum.

The Presidential Guard was accused of abuses of power during the presidency of Mr. Compaoré, who was removed in a popular uprising in 2014, is currently in exile and was widely unpopular even before the recent coup attempt.