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03/04/2020 Burkina Faso (International Christian Concern) – According to statistics released by the Armed Conflict Location and Event Database (ACLED), Burkina Faso has seen a rise of 650 percent in civilian deaths due to conflict in the past year. This staggering number is nearly five times higher than the next biggest rise on the African continent, Mozambique. The actual number in 2018 was 173 total deaths. This jumped to 1295 deaths in 2019.

Such a large jump in attacks is directly attributable to large movements by jihadist groups South from Mali. As these groups have started to conduct attacks in Burkina Faso, it has created the fastest growing humanitarian crisis in Africa. Since February 2019, more than 700,000 people have been displaced from their homes and lands. This includes, according to the UNHCR, 150,000 people who have been displaced in the last three weeks alone.

Christians in Burkina Faso are feeling particularly scared, as many attacks have targeted their community. Christians in Burkina Faso make up only about 20% of the total population, but dozens of them have been killed in execution style attacks in or around church functions and buildings. Historically, Burkina Faso has been known for its peaceful coexistence between different religious communities. Please pray that this peace could return to the country as they continue to fight against terrorism and radicalism.

For interviews, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: press@persecution.org.