Burkina Faso charged and jailed former Prime Minister over deadly protests

Burkina Faso charged and jailed former Prime Minister over deadly protests

Former Burkina Faso Prime Minister Luc Adolphe Tiao has been arrested, detained and charged in court accused of complicity with violence that killed protesters who forced the former President Blaise Compaore to step down, the Justice Ministry said in a statement late Friday.

The ministry says Tiao is arrested and jailed accused of having signed a declaration as then Prime Minister, allowing the army to intervene with the use of weapons to restore calm in the popular uprising in 2014 which ousted former President Blaise Compaore. About 30 people died and 600 others were wounded in the protests.

“The former prime minister Luc-Adolphe Tiao was placed under committal order led to his arrest and subsequent imprisonment at the Ouagadougou prison this (Friday) morning in connection with the investigation of the case on the popular uprising in October 2014. He was charged with murder, assault and battery and then complicity of all these acts” Armand Ouedraogo, Burkina Faso Chief Prosecutor said.

This is the first indictment in relation to the 33 people killed during the uprising against Compaore in October 2014 which led to the fall of the regime.

Tiao who lived in exile in Ivory Coast for over a year and a half, returned to Burkina Faso last weekend, a week after the hearing of members of his government who remained in the country.

It was during the hearings that the police were delegated by the High Court on Tuesday to arrest him for his alleged role in the killings of protesters.

Meanwhile, another former prime minister, General Isaac Zida, who is on exile in Canada after serving till the 2015 election after the ousting of Compaore, is under trial in Burkina Faso for “desertion in time of peace”.

Burkina Faso authorities led by President Roch Marc Christian Kabore have vowed to investigate crimes during the popular uprising in 2014.

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