Tinder to the fire: Burkina Faso in the conflict zone

TitleTinder to the fire: Burkina Faso in the conflict zone
Publication TypeOther
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsA. Idrissa
Series titleRLS research paper on peace and conflict studies in West and Central Africa
Pagination - 53
Date Published2019
PublisherRosa Luxemburg Stiftung
Place PublishedDakar
Publication Languageeng
KeywordsBurkina Faso, conflict, violence

This study examines the reasons why northern Burkina has been engulfed by endemic violence since the mid-2010s, in an effort to understand future evolutions and recommend coping and preventive action. The causes of the violence, the study asserts, are external to Burkina and are found in the contest between militant Salafism and the Western “War on Terror,” but the reasons why the conflicts have become entrenched are related to structural issues in Burkina’s internal geopolitics, political economy, and state formation.To demonstrate these claims, the study describes a “Conflict Zone” that emerged in northern Mali following the fall of the regime of Col. Kaddafi of Libya, and that extended into northern Burkina a few years later; it analyzes the internal geopolitics of the country and the peculiar position of the north and the east in relation to the center and the west – described as the twin pillars of the state; it contrasts the impacts of policies of national development under Sankarism in the 1980s and of the neoliberal orientations followed under Blaise Compaoré; it shows how these structures and histories played into tensions and conflicts in northern and eastern Burkina; and how, in turn, these issues made of the region a propitious ground for the extension of the Conflict Zone. The study ends with technical and political recommendations regarding, on the one hand, the revitalization of the regalian state (justice, security, administration), and, on the other hand, the framing of a new blueprint for society. These recommendations also take into account the fact that the Burkina conflicts are part of a Conflict Zone that has a transnational and international life of its own.

IR handle/ Full text URLhttp://hdl.handle.net/1887/81813
Citation Key10447