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Ex-Burkina Faso President Compaore Apologizes To Thomas Sankara’s Family, For Killing Him

Ex-Burkina Faso President Compaore Apologizes To Thomas Sankara’s Family, For Killing Him

Former Burkina Faso President Blaise Compaore apologized to the family of his slain former friend and predecessor, Thomas Sankara, on Tuesday, according to Reuters. Sankara, a revolutionary icon, was assassinated after four years in power in a coup led by Compaore in 1987.

After succeeding Sankara, Compaore ruled Burkina Faso for 27 years. Following his decision to extend his tenure, the 71-year-old was eventually deposed in a popular uprising in 2014. He fled to Ivory Coast, where he has been in exile ever since.

A spokesman for the Burkinabe government read the ex-leader’s apology to Sankara’s family exclusively.

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“I apologize to the people of Burkina Faso for all the acts I may have committed during my tenure, most particularly to the family of my brother and friend Thomas Isidore Noel Sankara,” Compaore stated in the letter.

“With our dear homeland facing a dramatic and critical situation, we have no choice but to silence our differences in order to save our common heritage, Burkina Faso,” he added.

Compaore has consistently denied any involvement in Sankara’s murder. In April, however, a military court in Burkina Faso sentenced him to life in prison in absentia for the assassination of his predecessor.

However, earlier this month, the ex-leader returned to Burkina Faso on the invitation of the West African country’s military leader, Lieutenant Colonel Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba. However, his visit was widely criticized, with many Burkinabes questioning why he was allowed to return as a free man, according to Reuters.

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The West African country has been struggling to contain ongoing Islamist insurgencies that have resulted in significant displacement. The country’s general state of insecurity was the driving force behind the January military coup that deposed Burkina Faso’s civilian government.

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