Burkina Faso’s military has dissolved the country’s parliament and announced a transitional government, however it remains unclear who is in charge.
The decision follows violent protests against President Blaise Compaore, which resulted in the burning of the parliament and ransacking of the state television offices.
Speaking alongside the head of the Armed Forces this military spokesman said “the National Assembly has been dissolved, the government has been dissolved and a transitional body will be put in place in consultation with all parties. A return to the constitutional order is expected in no more than 12 months.”
The military announced that elections are set to take place within a year and an overnight curfew would be enforced.
The demonstrations started over plans to vote on Thursday on a government motion to change the constitution to allow President Blaise Compaore- who has ruled since a coup in 1987 – to stand for re-election. His whereabouts remain unknown.
At least nineteen people are reported to have been killed and scores more injured in the protests.
Earlier, the US and France, both allies of Burkina Faso in their fight against al Qaeda-linked groups in West Africa, called for an end to the violence.
Meanwhile, Regional West African bloc ECOWAS said that it would not accept any party seizing power through non-constitutional means, suggesting diplomatic pressure to leave President Compoare in place.