Unidentified armed men killed six civilians and injured two others in an attack on a convoy returning from a gold mine operated by Endeavour Mining in eastern Burkina Faso, according to a statement from the army.
The vehicles left the Boungou mine on Thursday to assist a supply convoy that had been stuck on the road for several days, according to Burkina Faso’s army chief of staff. At one point, the vehicles were left without an armed escort, which is when the attack took place.
Burkina Faso is battling a sprawling Islamist insurgency that placed the country fourth on the Institute of Economics and Peace’s Global Terrorism Index, behind Afghanistan, Iraq and Somalia. Attacks have been increasingly targeting the country’s gold mining industry, leading to a plunge in production in the first half of 2022.
Endeavour took over operations at Boungou from Quebec-based Semafo in March 2020. At the time, Boungou had been shut for five months after 39 people were killed in an attack on a convoy carrying employees from the mine in November 2019.
An Endeavour official didn’t immediately respond to a text message seeking comment.
(By Katarina Hoije)