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Burkina Fasos President Blaise Compaore resigns

From: BBC
The new military leader, Military chief Gen Honore Traore
The new military leader, Military chief Gen Honore Traore

Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore has announced his resignation, following violent protests at his attempt to extend his 27-year rule.

Mr Compaore issued a statement saying the presidency was now vacant and urging elections within 90 days.

Military chief Gen Honore Traore said he had taken over as head of state "in line with constitutional measures".

Crowds danced and cheered in the capital, Ouagadougou, after Mr Compaore's resignation was broadcast.

On Thursday, protesters angry at his attempt to amend the constitution had set fire to parliament and government buildings.

There was a euphoric atmosphere in the Place de la Nation as the thousands of protesters heard that Blaise Compaore was no longer their president.

The demonstrators sang the national anthem. But the crowds have no intention of going home, as they are unhappy that Gen Honore Traore has been appointed as transitional head.

He is seen as too close to the ousted president - he was Blaise Compaore's aide de camp - and for these demonstrators that is not enough of a rupture with the past. They have been chanting "Lougue, Lougue, Lougue" - the name of retired Gen Kouame Lougue, a former defence minister who fell out with Mr Compaore in 2003.

"This is not a coup - this is a popular uprising," one man in the crowd said. "We rose up, we fought and we won, and now we are saying we want this man to lead. We don't want Honore, we want Kouame Lougue."

 


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