The French military contingent stationed in Burkina Faso have been given one month notice to leave the country.The military junta in Ouagadougou has repudiated a 2018 agreement with former colonial power France for its troops to remain stationed in Burkina Faso under the so-called Sabre Task Force and have issued an unequivocal demand for their departure as the deal runs out in January 2023.
The news announced by the Burkina Information Agency (AIB) has been confirmed by security and diplomatic sources who said this demand was communicated to the French diplomat in Ouagadougou on January 18, 2023.
The notice gives the French forces one month to leave Burkinabe territory, according to the terms of the agreement of December 17, 2018.
The quitting order concerns the 400-strong French troops under Operation Saber, stationed in Kamboinsin near the capital Ouagadougou.
It follows several months of demonstrations by Burkinabe citizens demanding foreign forces leave their country.
The protesters accuse France of not doing enough to help Burkina Faso deal with wave after wave of terrorist attacks, and in some case were allegedly found working with the insurgents.
In the recent past, France had not ruled out the departure of its soldiers based in Burkina Faso.
These special forces were deployed in support of Operation Barkhane in the Sahel, the objective of which is to track down and neutralise terrorists and the threats they pose the region.
France has officially ended its anti-jihadist operation Barkhane after a diplomatic row with Mali.
This was against the backdrop of increasing rapprochement between Russia and Mali another country plagued by jihadist violence.
However, French soldiers have not entirely left the Sahel region.