A suspected jihadist attack on a military-escorted supply convoy in Burkina Faso left 11 soldiers dead and 50 civilians missing Monday, according to the BBC.
Authorities said the attack, which took place in a region facing a deadly jihadist threat, also caused significant physical damage to the convoy and left 28 wounded, the BBC reported. Those injured include 20 soldiers, seven civilians and one Volunteer for the Defense of the Homeland, according to the outlet.
The attack occurred in Gaskinde, a commune in the northern Soum province, 12 miles away from Djibo, the town where the convoy was originally due to arrive, according to Reuters.
Jihadists with links to al-Qaida and Islamic State are progressively ramping up their attacks in northern Burkina Faso, the outlet reported. An attack in June left 55 dead in the region, and a roadside bombing in early September killed at least 35 and injured a dozen people.
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Military-escorted supply convoys and air drops provide essential resources from the government for locals who are surrounded by militant-enforced blockades, according to Reuters. (RELATED: FARAHAT: Al-Qaida’s Radical Ideas Are Making A Comeback. Here’s Why)
Lt. Col. Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba, who took power in Burkina Faso following a January military coup, pledged to combat the Islamist insurgency that escalated in the country in 2015, according to the BBC.
France also maintains a military presence in some of Burkina Faso’s Sahel countries, but the August withdrawal of French troops from neighboring Mali heightened fears of an invigorated jihadist insurgency in the region, the BBC reported.