American citizen killed in Burkina Faso, US State Dept says

International

In this Tuesday Feb. 18, 2020, photo, Burkina Faso paratroopers commando exercise under the supervision of Dutch special forces during U.S. military-led annual counterterrorism exercise in Thies, Senegal. More than 1,500 service members from the armies of 34 African and partner training nations have assembled for the Flintlock exercises in Senegal and Mauritania, the two countries in West Africa’s sprawling Sahel region that so far have not been hit by violence from extremists linked to al-Qaida or the Islamic State group. (AP Photo/Cheikh A.T Sy)

OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso (AP) — An American citizen has been killed in the capital of the West African nation of Burkina Faso, according to the U.S. State Department.

The State Department said late Saturday it was not aware that the person had any affiliation with the U.S. government, but declined to give more information out of respect for the privacy of the individual and the family.

The Associated Press spoke with four government and army officials who confirmed that the man was shot Saturday morning outside of the Baba Sy military camp on the outskirts of Ouagadougou, the capital, after trespassing and ignoring a warning shot by soldiers to stop advancing. The man died from gunshot wounds and was taken to the morgue at Yalgado Ouedraogo University Hospital, according to an employee who feared being identified.

The government said it would put out a statement later on the death.

The shooting came one day before voters in Burkina Faso went to the polls for a presidential and legislative election that comes amid ongoing attacks linked to al-Qaida and the Islamic State. The violence has killed more than 2,000 people this year and displaced 1 million from their homes in the West African nation.

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