A terrorist attack Tuesday on a military base and a town in northern Burkina Faso killed 35 civilians, most of them women, President Roch Marc Christian Kabore said on Twitter. The army earlier said the morning attack on Arbinda town had left seven soldiers, several civilians and 80 militants dead, in the latest jihadist violence to hit the country.
The violence, which erupted in the town of Arbinda in Sahel region near the country's border with Mali, lasted for several hours, according to a military statement.
“The heroic action of our soldiers has made it possible to neutralize 80 terrorists," President Roch Marc Christian Kabore said. “This barbaric attack resulted in the death of 35 civilians, most of them women.”
However, no organisation has claimed responsibility for the attack. A number of Islamic extremist groups are known to operate in Burkina Faso.
Frequent attacks in the country's north and east already have displaced more than a half million people, according to the United Nations.
At least 37 civilians were killed in the east last month when suspected jihadists ambushed a convoy carrying employees of Canadian mining company Semafo in eastern Burkina Faso.
The attack comes just a week after French President Emmanuel Macron visited the region, where thousands of French troops are working with G5 Sahel nations — Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger — to fight a number of Islamist insurgent groups.