By James Tasamba
KIGALI, Rwanda (AA) - Burkina Faso’s military leader Lt. Col. Paul Henri Damiba vowed Thursday to hunt down the perpetrators of an attack this week in the Sahel region in which nearly a dozen soldiers were killed.
At least 11 soldiers were killed and around 50 civilians were missing following a terrorist attack Monday targeting a supply convoy bound for the town of Djibo in Soum province. Another 28 people were wounded, including 20 soldiers.
The perpetrators of the attacks “will be hunted down by all means,” Damiba said after touring the commune of Gaskinde, the site of the attack, located about 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Djibo, according to the presidency.
“I have come to tell you that the pain you are currently feeling, we are feeling it. The anger you are feeling now, we feel it, because we have lost our troops and civilians,” he said.
Damiba urged the military to be vigilant about espionage, sabotage and subversive propaganda.
“We need to know that we are being spied on on both sides, in our movements and in our parking lots. We must also know that there are people who are constantly (engaged) in sabotage, and we must also understand that there are people who are (involved) in (spreading) subversive propaganda to affect us, especially on social networks,” he said.
The Delegation of the European Union and the heads of mission of the EU member states in Burkina Faso strongly deplored and condemned the attack.
“The EU and its Member States renew their unwavering support for the Burkinabe authorities in the fight against terrorism and their commitment to stabilizing the country for the benefit of the Burkinabe people,” a statement said.
Burkina Faso has suffered persistent insecurity posed by an insurgency that spread from neighboring Mali over the past decade.
Last week, Damiba called for international support in the fight against violent insecurity, which he said had displaced more than 1.5 million people as of Aug. 31.