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ECOWAS bloc calls for swift return to civilian rule after civilian coup hit Burkina

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The Economic Community of West African States ECOWAS has called for a return of constitutional order in Burkina Faso.

This came up after the body had an emergency meeting Thursday in Accra, Ghana to mitigate the next cause of action following the coup which hit Burkina Faso last month, and the situation in Mali and Guinea where the militaries also seized power.

ECOWAS however did not place further sanctions on Burkina Faso.

“They decided to maintain the sanction that was taken last week (suspending the country from the ECOWAS bloc). They demanded immediate release without the condition of President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, and because he resigned, they felt there is absolutely no reason to maintain him. And in fact, they went – I don’t know if I indicated that but – if really they (the military) don’t release him, they will take sanctions. And secondly, thirdly, they decided that they (ECOWAS) want to see a very quick timetable for the return of constitutional order,” Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, ECOWAS Commission President.

The summit focused on the emerging threats in the West Africa region that stem from the military interference in Mali and its contagious influence in Guinea and Burkina Faso.

Jean-Claude said “Let’s not really fall into the illusion that the military takeover will solve the problem. They cannot solve the problem, and they will not solve the problem because we have seen it in the past. It will create and bring more problems. Yet if you have problems and issues (in a democratic government), you have to deal with the problems and issues. There are problems, there are issues and they have to be dealt with. The solution is not a military coup.”

In the last 18 months, soldiers have grabbed power in Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso. Despite international pressure for a return to constitutional rule, none of the military rulers have yet to organize new elections.