Two Spanish journalists and Irish citizen killed in Burkina Faso attack | World News


Two Spanish journalists and an Irish citizen have been killed after they were ambushed during an anti-poaching mission in Burkina Faso.

Reporter David Beriain, 44, and photographer Roberto Fraile, 47, had been filming a documentary.

Spanish media producer Movistar+ paid tribute to those killed including Mr Beriain, who had worked on a number of films for the company.

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Spanish journalist David Beriain was among those killed in the attack. Pic: Jose Carlos Cordovilla/Diario de Navarra via AP

It also named the Irish citizen as Zambian-born Rory Young, head of the anti-poaching organisation Chengeta Wildlife.

The three foreigners and a member of the Burkinabe armed forces went missing on Monday when a convoy of security forces and forest rangers they were travelling with was ambushed near Pama nature reserve. The soldier is still missing.

No one has yet claimed responsibility for the ambush, but officials described the attackers as “terrorists”.

The unit that was ambushed was part of a new joint army, police and forestry unit that had just gone through six months of training and was starting operations in conservation areas around Pama on the border with Benin and Togo.

Ireland’s foreign ministry said it had been in contact with the family of the Irish citizen as well as with European Union and Spanish colleagues.

It said “the situation is complex” and added that officials are working with “relevant actors on the ground”.

Spain’s prime minister Pedro Sanchez confirmed the “worst of news” and paid tribute to the journalists and recognised their “brave and essential” work in zones of conflict.

The Burkinabe government has reported an increase in violence elsewhere in the past 72 hours, with around 10 civilians killed in a spate of armed raids on villages.

Burkina Faso, like much of West Africa‘s Sahel region, faces a deepening security crisis as groups with links to al Qaeda and Islamic State step up attacks on the army and civilians despite the presence of French and UN forces.



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