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Burkina Faso’s ousted leader Damiba flees to Togo

Ousted Burkina Faso Leader, Lieutenant-Colonel Paul Damiba.

The Togolese government has confirmed that ousted Burkina Faso leader, Lieutenant-Colonel Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba fled to Togo following a military coup.

A report on Monday by France 24 said Togo’s Minister of Communication and government spokesman, Akodah Ayewouadan had confirmed that Damiba was in the country as part of its commitment to “peace in the sub-region”.

The report stated that the confirmation came as the West African bloc, ECOWAS, plans to send envoys to Burkina Faso after troops toppled Damiba in the country’s second putsch this year.

“Togo, like ECOWAS, welcomes the fact that the spirit of peace has prevailed,” a Togolese official told AFP.

“The reception of… Damiba is part of this spirit.”

The streets of Burkina Faso’s capital Ouagadougou were quiet on Monday after a two-day showdown between military rivals, media reports have said.

The ousted Burkinabe leader’s departure followed mediations between Damiba – who himself took power in a January putsch – and the new self-proclaimed leader, Ibrahim Traoré, by the religious and community leaders.

On Sunday, religious leaders who had mediated between the factions said that Damiba had offered his resignation as long as his security and other conditions were met.

A junta representative later announced on state television that their leader, Captain Ibrahim Traoré, officially has been named head of state following the Friday coup that ousted Damiba.

Their power grab marked Burkina Faso‘s second military coup this year, deepening fears that the political chaos could divert attention from an Islamic insurgency whose violence has killed thousands and forced 2 million to flee their homes.

Writing by Abdullahi Lamino; Editing by Tony Okerafor