Burkina Faso Ends Operation Against Suspected Jihadists

Burkina Faso’s security forces have ended their operation against gunmen who opened fire Sunday on a restaurant in the country’s capital, killing at least 18 people and wounding eight.

Communications Minister Remis Dandjinou said the dead are “mainly children and women” and the toll would likely rise.

The nationalities of the victims are reported to include Burkinabes and foreigners.

Burkina Faso President Roch Marc Christian Kabore said the raid was “a despicable attack that has Ouagadougou in mourning.”

In a Twitter message, the president said “The fight against terrorism is a long-term struggle.”

French President Emmanuel Macron and Kabore are set to talk about the attack Monday. Burkina Faso is a former French colony.

Macron said in a statement that France is committed to working with countries in West Africa in the fight against terrorism.

​Two of the suspected jihadists who carried out the assault on Aziz Istanbul, a Turkish restaurant in Ouagadougou, were killed in the shootout with the forces. It was not immediately clear how many assailants were involved in the raid.

Some people were able to escape the restaurant when the attackers opened fire, but others were trapped inside the building.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the violence.

The landlocked country, one of the poorest in the world, shares a remote northern border with Mali, a country that has long battled Islamic extremists.

In January 2016, an attack on a luxury hotel and a nearby cafe in Ouagadougou killed 30 people. Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb claimed responsibility for the raid.