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Unrest in Burkina Faso: Release of Dozens of Kidnapped Women

66 women and children who were abducted by alleged militant jihadists in Burkina Faso’s north last week have been freed by security troops, according to state television.

The victims were abducted in an unprecedented mass kidnapping while gathering food in an insurgency-affected area.

According to accounts, they were located on a bus at a security checkpoint around 200 kilometers (125 miles) south of where they were taken.

It is unknown if their captors have also been taken into custody.

On Friday night, images of the kids and women, some of whom had infants on their backs, boarding a bus at an airport following an address by a military officer were shown on state television.

After spending eight arduous days in the custody of their captors, they have now gained freedom, the reporter reports.

A security source told the AFP news agency that they are currently in the capital, Ouagadougou, where they will likely be interrogated to learn “more about their abductors, their captivity, and their transportation.”

On January 12 and 13, two groups of women and children were abducted in the Arbinda district.

Jihadist militants have blocked the area’s access roads. Due to the scarcity of food and the dire humanitarian situation, there is extreme hunger.

In order to obtain food and supplies, demonstrators in Arbinda smashed into warehouses last month.]]

An insurgency that has lasted ten years and forced over two million people from their homes has affected Burkina Faso as a country.

Last January, when the military seized power, attacks were promised to stop. After failing to put a stop to the insurgency, a separate set of officers staged a second coup in September, but the violence has persisted.

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