Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso iStock

Soldiers in the West African country of Burkina Faso on Monday announced on state television that they have seized power following a mutiny over the civilian president's failure to contain an Islamist insurgency, AFP reports.

A junior officer announced the suspension of the constitution, the dissolution of the government and parliament, and the closure of the country's borders as of midnight Monday, reading from a statement signed by Lieutenant Colonel Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba.

The officer said the new Patriotic Movement for Preservation and Restoration (MPSR) would re-establish "constitutional order" within a "reasonable time", adding that a nationwide nightly curfew would be enforced.

Hundreds of people gathered to celebrate the military coup in Ouagadougou, welcoming soldiers, honking car horns and waving the national flag.

Earlier on Monday, African and Western powers denounced what they called an "attempted coup" and the EU demanded the "immediate" release of President Roch Marc Christian Kabore.

The United States also called for Kabore's release and urged "members of the security forces to respect Burkina Faso's constitution and civilian leadership."

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said in a statement he "strongly condemns any attempted takeover of government by the force of arms", calling events a "coup".

A government source had said Kabore was "exfiltrated" from his home late Sunday by his presidential guard "before the arrival of armed elements who fired on the vehicles of his convoy".

Kabore, in power since 2015 and reelected in 2020, has faced rising public anger about the failure to stop the bloodshed in the country.

On Monday, the People's Movement for Progress ruling party said Kabore was the victim of an "aborted assassination attempt".

A government minister, who was not named, also survived an attempt on his life and the president's home was ransacked, it added.

The party said the presidential palace had been "encircled" by "a group of armed and masked men" and the national radio and television "occupied".