African Union suspends Burkina Faso after military coup

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The African Union has suspended Burkina Faso from all its activities in response to last week’s mili-tary coup, effective until constitutional order is re-stored, the AU said on Monday.

Burkina Faso had already been suspended from the West African regional bloc, the Economic Commu-nity of West African States, though ECOWAS stopped short of imposing sanctions after the Jan. 24 coup that ousted President Roch Kabore.

An ECOWAS delegation along with a United Na-tions envoy were due to visit Burkina Faso on Mon-day to meet with the coup leaders before deciding on next steps.

“Council decides in line with the relevant AU in-struments… to suspend the participation of Burkina Faso in all AU activities until the effective restora-tion of constitutional order in the country,” the AU Political Affairs, Peace and Security Department said in a Twitter post.

The AU suspended two other West African mem-bers, Mali and Guinea, after their own military takeovers last year. The coup in Burkina Faso was the fourth in the region in 18 months.

ECOWAS and its international allies have con-demned the coup, which they fear could further destabilize a country beset by Islamist violence, but find themselves with limited leverage.

The Burkinabe coup leader, Lt. Col. Paul-Henri Damiba, said last week that the country would re-turn to constitutional order “when the conditions are right.”—AN

 

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