Group attacks Turkish mine in Burkina Faso after killing of local man – France 24

Tensions between locals and Turkish workers at a mine in Burkina Faso have led to a group of Burkinabes attacking the Turkish-owned mine after a security guard killed a local man, France 24s international news programme the Observers reported on Thursday.

The local man was killed while illegally panning for gold on the premises of the mine operated by Turkish company Avesoro on August 7, the Observers said.

Outraged at the extrajudicial killing, a group of around 100 locals, some armed with pickaxes, attacked the mine the next day, the report said. The attackers set fire to machines and dormitories and ransacked the management offices, it said.

Footage reported to have been shot on the day of the attack shows Turkish workers hiding in the forest.

Avesoro released a statement saying work at the mine had been suspended after a “security” breach. Company CEO Serhan Umurhan was travelling to the mine to determine when operations could recommence, the August 9 statement said.

Anger at the Turkish company had been growing for months among locals, around 500 of whom had lost their jobs at the mine, the Observers’ report said.

The mine had replaced those laid off with expatriate workers from Turkey. Many of these were unqualified to work in the mine, a breach of the Burkina Faso mining code, the report said.