An Al-Qaeda affiliate has claimed responsibility for the terrorist attack on the French embassy and the army headquarters in the capital of Burkina Faso, Ouagadougou, in which 16 people were killed and 80 others were injured. Jama’a Nusrat ul-Islam wa al-Muslimin (JNIM), a Mali-based Islamist group, said eight of its members carried out the coordinated twin attacks, speaking via the Mauritanian news outlet Alakhbar. JNIM is believed to have carried out multiple attacks against both civilian and military targets across the western Sahel region in recent years. The attacks were reportedly in response to the killing of one of the group’s leaders, Mohamed Hacen al-Ancari, in a recent raid carried out by French forces. France has maintained a force of approximately 4,000 troops in its former colonies across the Sahel region since an incursion by Islamic militants in 2013.
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