Overview: The Government of Burkina Faso remained a serious, stable ally, fully cognizant of the threats posed by regional extremism in the Sahel and elsewhere in West Africa. Burkina Faso's counterterrorism capabilities were limited owing to financial constraints, but it was consistently responsive to U.S. requests for cooperative operations. In an effort to improve its counterterrorism capabilities, senior Burkinabe officials requested U.S. assistance in the form of training and equipment and specifically identified regional intelligence sharing, border security, and airport security as three vulnerabilities to address. There was still no formal method for tracking movement into and out of the country at border checkpoints or at either of the country's two commercial airports in Ouagadougou and Bobo Dioulasso.

Although there were no terrorist incidents in Burkina Faso in 2010, al-Qa'ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) remained a threat, particularly in the Mali-Niger-Burkina Faso tri-border area where AQIM attempted to locate and kidnap Westerners.

Legislation and Law Enforcement: The President of Burkina Faso issued a decree in 2010 underscoring his support for the Suppression of Terrorism law passed in 2009 by the National Assembly. The law's passage and the President's decree demonstrated the country's political will to ensure that its territory is not used as a staging ground for violent extremists or transnational terrorist attacks.

Countering Terrorist Finance: Burkina Faso was a member of the Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa, a Financial Action Task Force-style regional body. The Government of Burkina Faso provided UN lists of designated terrorists or terrorist entities to financial institutions. There were no known terrorist financing prosecutions in 2010.

Regional and International Cooperation: The Burkina Faso government participated in regional and international counterterrorism conferences and training exercises. It expressed its desire to collaborate with neighboring countries to counter violent extremism through a multilateral approach, such as participating in joint training exercises and regional partnerships. Burkina Faso cooperated with U.S. counterterrorism efforts and participated in the Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership (TSCTP). Its cooperation and partnership in the TSCTP were demonstrated in May when the government hosted U.S. Africa Command's (AFRICOM) annual regional counterterrorism exercise FLINTLOCK 10 and attended a related Joint Combined Exchange Training program in Mali. Burkina Faso's government also participated in numerous regional efforts to combat terrorism, including with the Economic Community of West African States, the AU, and other international organizations.

Countering Radicalization and Violent Extremism: The Government of Burkina Faso and the Embassy conducted several joint projects, including a medical outreach program in the far north of Burkina Faso, a predominantly Muslim and Touareg region. The government encouraged regular and ongoing inter-faith dialogues as a way to mitigate extremism.


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