Burkina Faso Coup: Military Junta Frees Interim President

Burkina Faso interim President, Michel Kafando, was detained by the country's military following a coup. Photo: afrika.no
Burkina Faso interim President, Michel Kafando, was detained by the country’s military following a coup. Photo: afrika.no

Burkina Faso’s interim President, Michel Kafando, has been freed following his detention by the military, which took over power in the West African country on Wednesday night.

Reuters quoted the head of the junta, Gilbert Diendere, a General, as saying on state television that the President is in hale and hearty.

“I confirm that President Kafando has been freed. He is in good health,” Diendere, a former chief of staff to ex-dictator, Blaise Compore, said.

He, however, added that the interim Prime Minister, Yacouba Isaac Zida, has been placed under house arrest.

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Burkina Faso was due to hold elections in October, following the ouster of Compaore in 2014 when widespread protests led to his fleeing the country for Ivory Coast, where he has since lived in exile, after 27 years repressive rule.

But the elite presidential guard cut short the transition when it placed under arrest key members of the interim government on Wednesday before announcing the following day that it was taking over the government.