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Old 01-16-2016, 11:03 AM   #51
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MODS -- since the siege appears ended, perhaps this thread can be moved to this thread https://thisbluemarble.com/showthread.php?t=65572 / Terrorism: Attacks, Threats and Fallout in TBM's World

Thank you!!


>>>>>>Full article at link




Terror in Burkina Faso: Al Qaeda jihadists - including two female fighters - are killed after murdering 27 people from 18 different countries as Commandos storm hotel and rescue hostages

27 people have died in the attack on the Splendid Hotel in Burkina Faso's capital, Ouagadougou, West Africa

Security forces stormed the hotel and have reportedly freed 126 hostages and killed three of the gunmen

Local al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) branch Al-Mourabitoun have claimed responsibility for the attack

One the 33 people wounded in the attack has been identified as French photographer Leila Alaoui

Fourth gunman killed at the Yibi Hotel following a lengthy siege in the Burkinabe capital this morning

An Austrian couple have also reportedly been kidnapped on Burkina Faso's northern border with Mali


A 15-hour terror attack by four jihadists at a luxury hotel in Burkina Faso has come to an end this morning after security forces stormed the building and rescued 126 of the hostages.

Burkinabe special forces, assisted by 30 French special forces, broke the lengthy siege and stormed the Splendid Hotel in Ouagadougou. Three of the gunmen were eliminated after a firefight before the hotel was re-captured by special forces.

27 people from 18 different countries were killed in the terror attack at the hotel in the Burkinabe capital. As many as 33 of the 126 survivors were also wounded during the attack, the Burkinabe Interior Ministry confirmed.

At least ten of the victims in the terror attack were gunned down at the Cappuccino Cafe, situated next door to the hotel. The attack has been claimed by al-Mourabitoun, an al-Qaeda affiliated group based in the Sahel region of northern Mali.

The Burkinabe President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré confirmed that a fourth gunman at the Yibi Hotel has been killed. He labelled the attacks 'cowardly and vile' and claimed that two of the four attackers are thought to have been female fighters.




http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...kina-Faso.html
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Old 01-16-2016, 05:10 PM   #52
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There are always media reports about survivors after an attack like this. But they're often embellished or shaped by the media to make a "better story" or to suit a narrative. Not this one. It's as first-hand as it gets.



'Waiting for someone to save or kill you': a Burkina survivor's tale


Quote:
Al Qaeda fighters singled out white people during an attack in Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou, returning repeatedly to a restaurant popular with foreigners to execute the wounded lying amid overturned tables and chairs, a survivor said on Saturday.

Security forces backed by French and U.S. military personnel retook the luxury Splendid Hotel and secured surrounding buildings during an hours-long operation in which four suspected Islamist militants were killed.

While some 150 hostages were freed, around two dozen people from 18 different countries died.

"It felt like something had exploded in the restaurant," said a Slovenian woman who was in the Cappuccino restaurant, opposite the Splendid.

"At first I thought it was a firecracker or a fuse. But then it continued and I realized that, okay, they are shooting at us," the social anthropologist, who did not want her name to be used, told Reuters in neighboring Ivory Coast by phone.

"It seemed like indiscriminate shooting at first."

Two men, one tall and bearded, the other young and short, then burst into the restaurant, packed with a mix of local Burkinabe and white foreign diners enjoying a Friday night out.

"They were dressed all in black, and their faces were showing. They weren't hiding their faces. They had Kalashnikovs ... and they also went and shot people with a handgun."

The woman dashed for a hiding place as the gunmen started singling out white customers. She managed to squeeze between the wall and a bench and lay there for two hours.

"I wasn't sure if my feet were showing. That was my biggest fear. I thought they might see my white feet and come and shoot me," said the woman, who has been visiting Burkina Faso for two decades.

"YOU'D THINK 'IT'S OVER', THEN THEY'D COME BACK"

From her hiding place, the woman saw little but could hear the attackers' movements.

"We heard shots, grenades, detonations. It was echoing and extremely loud ... They kept coming back and forth into Cappuccino. So you'd think 'It's over', then they'd come back and shoot more people."

"They would come back and see if the white people were moving and then they would shoot them again," she said. "My friend had a dead white person on top of her, bleeding onto her. But his body saved her."

Soon the power went out, plunging the restaurant into darkness as customers who had not been killed lay motionless, feigning death.

"There was a child ... I could hear the child speaking to the mother for a while and the mother answering. She kept telling him to keep quiet," the woman said.

As the room started to fill with smoke, the mother started gasping for air before eventually falling silent. It is not known whether she or her child survived.

With the smoke thickening, the Slovenian in her hiding place was faced with a stark choice.

"I thought I would die from asphyxiation because there was smoke and fire. So my gut feeling was that I take the risk now to go out and get shot or I die from choking on the fire or burning. I heard the crackling sound of fire," the survivor said.

"It was so dark ... I bumped into tables and there was glass on the floor ... I didn't even dare look if there were bodies. And when I got out, there were people hiding under cars as they were slowly trying to get away."

The woman made her way to a compound next to the restaurant where other survivors had gathered. It was another hour before soldiers arrived to escort them to safety.

"I kept looking at my watch, but it didn't seem to make any sense, because it was so slow. It felt so long, because every minute you're waiting for someone to come and help you and save you - or kill you."
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Old 01-16-2016, 05:20 PM   #53
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Quote:
"There was a child ... I could hear the child speaking to the mother for a while and the mother answering. She kept telling him to keep quiet," the woman said.

As the room started to fill with smoke, the mother started gasping for air before eventually falling silent. It is not known whether she or her child survived.

With the smoke thickening, the Slovenian in her hiding place was faced with a stark choice.

"I thought I would die from asphyxiation because there was smoke and fire. So my gut feeling was that I take the risk now to go out and get shot or I die from choking on the fire or burning. I heard the crackling sound of fire," the survivor said.

"It was so dark ... I bumped into tables and there was glass on the floor ... I didn't even dare look if there were bodies. And when I got out, there were people hiding under cars as they were slowly trying to get away."

The woman made her way to a compound next to the restaurant where other survivors had gathered. It was another hour before soldiers arrived to escort them to safety.

"I kept looking at my watch, but it didn't seem to make any sense, because it was so slow. It felt so long, because every minute you're waiting for someone to come and help you and save you - or kill you."
Cannot imagine the sheer terror or the courage to make such a choice, in an attempt survive...........
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Old 01-16-2016, 07:20 PM   #54
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A couple of additions to the article that NV posted. First, the couple that have been kidnapped are Australian, not Austrian. The man is a doctor and his wife was with him. I don't know if he is affiliated with an NGO. Secondly, there is possibly an American missing - Mike Riddering. He and his wife are missionaries and Riddering was meeting with a local pastor at Cappucino, the restaurant where the attack began. As of this afternoon, his wife has had no contact with him and is working with the embassy to try to find him. (U.S. missionary missing after al-Qaeda attack)

I'm now seeing a report that 6 of the dead are Canadians. I haven't checked further on that yet.


I was monitoring a dozen or so different sources last night; some Twitter feeds, a couple of media live blogs and some websites. There was a lot that I didn't post, mostly because the info was contradictory and there was no way to confirm any of it. But more is coming out now so I'll post some notes I made last night. They're in no particular order, just some things that struck me as significant.

1. Among the hostages were the Burkinabe Minister of Labor (or Public Sector), and Dr. Adal Rhoubeid, a candidate for the presidency of Niger. The fact that the attackers don't realize they had a gov't Minister is a strong indicator that they were primarily focused on white people/Westerners.

2. References to US forces being part of the attack. There are about 50 US troops stationed with French troops in Burkina Faso. Seems that there is 1 that is embedded with the French troops sent to help Burkinabe forces retake the hotel. Both France and Burkinabe forces requested and received intel & recon support from the U.S. but I don't think there are any other U.S. forces directly involved.

3. AQIM gave extensive phone interviews during the stand-off. AQIM also identifying fighters as al-Murabitoon. Also broadcast almost a play by play as it was happening. Might include statements from the attackers themselves. But also seems that AQIM forces elsewhere spoke with the attackers and relayed their comments. Among the things said were:

"After stating his obedience to Zawahiri, the attacker also expresses its solidarity with the Ummah & jihadists to Syria and Yemen"

"The assailant expressed in this audio purports to act to avenge the Prophet (reference to cartoons) and support the oppressed."

(above translated from tweets in French)

The hotel was targeted because it's "frequented by staff of the nations of global disbelief"
The operation was "revenge against France and the disbelieving West."

Other comments made include a lot of references to France. This probably explains why "white people" are being targeted.
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Old 01-16-2016, 08:12 PM   #55
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Yes, no less than our Prime Minister announced that 6 of the dead were not only Canadian, they were from the province of Quebec. The only other detail offered, (privacy concerns),is that they were NOT government employees.

I think we may learn more after family notifications but there's no guarantee of that.
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Old 01-16-2016, 09:07 PM   #56
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The American, Mike Riddering, has been confirmed as one of those killed. Also, there's a little more info on the role of U.S. forces.

American Missionary Among At Least 23 Killed in al Qaeda-Linked Burkina Faso Attack

Quote:
...The American missionary's body was identified by his wife on Saturday, according to family members. Mike Riddering, 45 years old, worked with his wife Amy at Les Ailes de Refuge orphanage in Yako, a town about 100 kilometers northwest of the Ouagadougou.

...Six Canadians, two French, two Swiss and a Dutch citizen are among the other victims, according to statements by their respective governments.

...A spokesman for Special Operations Command Africa confirmed that American forces had assisted in recovery operations. Maj. Nathan Broshear said U.S. military personnel worked alongside the Burkina Faso and French militaries in the operation. A small number of U.S. forces directly assisted in the hotel, he said, and were focused on rescuing the civilians, not engaging the assailants.
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