Burkina Faso coup leader taken into custody, to face trial


Ouagadougou – The leader of the recent failed coup in Burkina Faso was taken into custody on Thursday by government forces in order to face trial, local media reported.

General Gilbert Diendere had taken refuge in the residence of the Catholic Church’s representative in the country and agreed to go into custody only after negotiations guaranteeing Diendere’s life, the reports said.

Diendere had led the 1 200-member presidential guard in a coup last month, taking interim President Michel Kafando, interim Prime Minister Isaac Zida and two ministers captive on September 16.

Under pressure from the regular army and West African leaders, coup leaders agreed several days later to hand power back to civilian authorities.

The interim government was reinstated last week and announced on Friday that it was disbanding the presidential guard.

Earlier in the week, Diendere called on the “uncontrolled” elements of his followers to surrender and avoid a “bloodbath”, speaking on radio station Omega FM.

The coup leaders had opposed plans to integrate the presidential guard into the army.