Lt. Col. Paul-Henri Damiba has been deposed, an army captain in Burkina Faso declared on state television.
Lt. Col.Damiba’s incapacity to handle an Islamist insurgency was highlighted by Ibrahim Traore as the cause
He also said that all political activity had been put on hold and that the borders had been closed permanently.
An elected government was overthrown by Lt. Col Damiba’s junta in January for failing to stop Islamist terrorism, among other reasons.
However, his administration has also failed to put an end to Islamist bloodshed. When they were guarding a convoy of civilian vehicles on Monday in the country’s north, 11 troops were slain.
After hearing a lot of shooting in several areas of the city earlier on Friday, Lt. Col. Damiba encouraged the populace to maintain calm.
Just before 20:00 local time, more than 20 armed soldiers—the majority of whom had their faces hidden—appeared on official television.
“Faced with the deteriorating situation, we tried several times to get Damiba to refocus the transition on the security question,” said the statement signed by Traore.
“Damiba’s actions gradually convinced us that his ambitions were diverting away from what we set out to do. We decided this day to remove Damiba,” it said.
A curfew from 21:00 to 05:00 was also announced.
Lt Col Damiba’s whereabouts are not known.
The United States said it was “deeply concerned” by events in Burkina Faso and encouraged its citizens to limit movements in the country.
“We call for a return to calm and restraint by all actors,” a State Department spokesperson said.
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) condemned the move, stating it “reaffirms its unreserved opposition to any taking or maintaining of the power by unconstitutional means”.
In the early hours of the morning, Ouagadougou’s capital heard shots and explosions, some of which were coming from close to the presidential palace and the main military barracks.
The normally busy city was largely deserted after morning, with soldiers blocking some streets and manning important strategic positions.
Later in the day, additional shooting was audible, and state television had ceased transmitting.
As talk of a coup d’état spread, according to Lt. Col.Damiba, there was a “confused situation” brought on by “mood swings” among some soldiers.
The military leader urged citizens to maintain their composure and avoid speculating on social media, stating that “negotiations under way to bring back calm and serenity”
President Roch Kaboré was deposed in January by Lt Col Damiba, who claimed that he had failed to address the rise in militant Islamist violence.
When he took office as president in February, the junta leader declared, “We have more than what it takes to win this war,”
However, a lot of people do not feel any safer, and this week, there have been protests around the nation.
Some protestors flocked to the streets of the nation’s capital on Friday afternoon to demand the dismissal of Lt. Col. Damiba.
In 2015, an Islamist insurgency broke out in Burkina Faso, displacing two million people from their homes and resulting in thousands of fatalities.
Since the nation’s independence in 1960, eight successful coups have taken place.