Guinea-Bissau’s President Umaro Embaló, who currently doubles as the chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), visited Burkina Faso on July 24 accompanied by ECOWAS’ mediator for Burkina Faso, former Nigerien President Mahamadou Issoufou. The visit was a follow-up to the July 3 ECOWAS summit, where Burkina Faso’s post-coup transition was on the agenda (French); ECOWAS and the Burkinabè junta, led by Paul-Henri Damiba, continue to appear satisfied with the current twenty-four-month transition plan (which runs through July 2024. Here is the Burkinabè Presidency’s readout (French) of the visit, and here (French) is Embaló’s brief comment.
Former longtime President Blaise Compaoré (in power 1987-2014) returned to Burkina Faso for a few days earlier this month for a “reconciliation” meeting with Damiba and one other past head of state. On July 26, he issued a formal apology to the Burkinabè people and especially to the family of his widely beloved predecessor Thomas Sankara (in power 1983-1987). In April of this year, Compaoré was convicted in absentia of complicity in Sankara’s murder (in the coup that brought Compaoré to power) and received a life sentence that he appears very, very unlikely to serve. The author of a recent biography of Sankara, Brian Peterson, comments here.
Jeune Afrique (French; paywalled) has a brief discussion of the career of the most wanted Burkinabè jihadist leader, Jafar Dicko. Jihadist attacks continue, including the destruction of two bridges (French) on July 15-16 in the Sahel Region (one of Burkina Faso’s regions, not to be confused with the overall Sahel region of Africa).
A Ghanaian TV report on Burkinabè refugees arriving in northern Ghana:
Here is the International Organization for Migration’s latest report (French) on population movements within, into, and out of Burkina Faso.
French Ambassador Luc Hallade upset (French) the Burkinabè authorities and various civil society groups with his remarks to the French Senate on July 5. More here (French).
Sahelian governments should crack down on extremist preaching? Turns out it’s not so simple (French).
Radio Omega with a long report on the “quiet mourning” of military families who have lost someone: