Up to 20 people are reported to have been killed and 15 wounded in explosions and gunfire after security forces stormed a hotel in Burkina Faso’s capital where Islamic militant fighters have been holding hostages.
Around 10 vehicles were on fire in the streets near the 146-room Splendid Hotel.
The Burkina Faso government said on Twitter that 33 people had been freed after commandos stormed the hotel, including minister Clement Sawadogo.
Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) claimed responsibility for the attack.
The group claimed that 30 “crusaders” had been killed in “revenge for the Prophet”, according to the US monitoring group SITE.
One witness told Associated Press that he saw four men attack the hotel and neighbouring Cappuccino Cafe at about 7.30pm local time.
Robert Sangare, director of Ouagadougou’s university hospital centre, said
- “We have received around 15 wounded people. There are people with bullet wounds and people who are injured because of falls.”
He said that the injured patients had told him they had seen around 20 bodies in the hotel.