Soldiers mutiny in Burkina Faso

Gunfire sounded from several military camps in Burkina Faso on Sunday (January 23) as mutinying soldiers demanded more support from the government in their fight against Al Qaeda and Islamic State-linked militants.

The government has called for calm and denies that the army has seized power or detained President Roch Kabore.

Heavy gunfire was first heard in the early hours at a camp in the capital Ouagadougou, which houses a prison whose inmates include soldiers involved in a failed 2015 coup attempt.

That's according to a Reuters reporter who saw soldiers firing into the air inside the camp, and at the Ouagadougou International Airport.

A witness also reported gunfire at a military camp in Kaya, around 62 miles north of the capital.

One of the mutineers, speaking to reporters, issued a series of demands.

They include appropriate resources and training for the army which has suffered severe losses at the hands of militants in recent months.

Another demand was the resignations of the army chief of staff and the head of the intelligence services.

Hundreds have come out in support of the soldiers and police fired teargas in downtown Ouagadougou to disperse around 300 protesters.

The government confirmed gunfire at some military camps but the West African country's defense minister said the reasons were still unclear.

Countries in the region are on high alert for coups after successful takeovers in Guinea and Mali over the past 18 months.

Earlier this month Burkinabe authorities arrested a dozen officers on suspicion of conspiring against the government.

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