3 questions to Estelle Dahani on insecurity in Burkina Faso

Sep 29, 2021

What are the security conditions of the Burkinabe people today?

The level of violence in the country has reached record levels in recent months. Armed terrorist groups have recruited heavily. They have also laid mines to trap roads and prevent security forces from intervening. For some time now, these groups have been targeting civilians as a priority to ambush security forces who come to their aid.

Between April and mid-June alone, nearly 300 civilians were killed in 115 security incidents. The North Central, Sahel, and Eastern regions continue to be the most affected.

What are the consequences for the population?

In the countryside, the majority of people live from agriculture and livestock. But increasingly often victims of looting or threatened with death, many flee their villages or isolate themselves.
Burkina Faso now has nearly 1.4 million internally displaced persons (IDPs), putting great pressure on the country's major cities. More than 2,000 schools have closed. And famine threatens the country: most farmers have not been able to grow crops and commodity prices have risen sharply.

How does the PE&D team continue to work under these conditions?

We have strengthened our security measures. We regularly assess the risks in the areas where we operate, we have set up travel procedures and communication channels with our local partners, and we are reinforcing the training of our employees and partners in good security practices. Without changing our DNA, we are adapting to the situation. PE&D is trying to position itself in the buffer cities that are hosting the displaced people to provide mothers and their children with support on early childhood development and education issues. It is essential that we all mobilize to protect all these children who are victims of violence from a very early age.