Armed attackers have killed at least 22 civilians in northwest Burkina Faso, the latest deadly incident in an uptick in violence in the region.
The latest attack occurred late on Sunday into early Monday morning, according to local officials, in the province of Kossi, about 55km (34 miles) from the border of restive central Mali.
“The provisional death toll of this terrorist attack is 22 dead, several wounded and material damage,” regional governor Babo Pierre Bassinga said in a statement.
Military forces have been deployed to the scene and measures are in place to host those who fled to nearby cities, the statement added.
The situation in Mali has worsened since a separatist movement began in the country’s north in 2012. In recent years, armed groups, including those linked to ISIL (ISIS) group and al-Qaeda, have jockeyed for influence in the resulting security vacuum in Mali’s central regions, while exacerbating communal tensions driven by climate change.
The insecurity has increasingly spread into neighbouring Burkina Faso and Niger, as well as the wider region.