Ex Burkina Faso’s President Compaore sentence to death for killing Sankara

Ex Burkina Faso’s President Compaore sentence to death for killing Sankara

Blaise Compaore, a former president of Burkina Faso, has been sentenced to life imprisonment for complicity in the 1987 murder of his predecessor, Thomas Sankara, in a coup.

He was sentenced in absentia by a  military tribunal on Wednesday, April 6, alongside two of his former top associates, Hyacinthe Kafando and Gilbert Diendere, who also got life imprisonment.

Sankara, a charismatic Marxist revolutionary, was sh#t de@d in the country’s capital Ouagadougou at the age of 37, four years after he took power in a previous putsch.

According to Reuters News, Compaore was found guilty of an att@ck on state security, complicity in m#rder and concealment of a co#pse, the tribunal said in its ruling.

Compaore ruled the West Africa country for 27 years before being ousted in another coup in 2014 and fleeing to Ivory Coast, where he is still believed to live.

A military court in Burkina Faso, on Wednesday, sentenced former President Blaise Compaore to life imprisonment over the 1987 assassination of the revolutionary leader, Thomas Sankara. Applause erupted in the courtroom as the long-awaited verdict was read; bringing the curtain down on a case that had afflicted the impoverished nation for 34 years.

Compaore, who lived in exile in Ivory Coast after being toppled by public protests in 2014, was tried in absentia alongside Hyacinthe Kafando, an officer suspected of having led the hit squad, and General Gilbert Diendere, an army commander at the time of the assassination, which coincided with a coup that brought Compaore to power.

The court found Compaore, Kafando and Diendere guilty of harming state security. Compaore and Diendere were also found guilty of complicity in murder, and Kafando of murder.

Their sentences exceeded the request of military prosecutors who had sought 30 years for Compaore and Kafando, and 20 years for Diendere, who was already serving a 20-year term over an attempted military coup in 2015.

The eight other accused were given jail terms ranging from three to 20 years, while three defendants were acquitted. A fiery Marxist-Leninist leader, Sankara, was shot dead on October 15, 1987, after four years of coming to power as a 33-year old army captain.

He, together with 12 colleagues, was killed by a hit squad at a meeting of the ruling National Revolutionary Council. Discussing the leftwing icon’s death, according to AFP, was a taboo throughout the 27-year reign of Compaore, who was Sankara’s comrade-in-arms.

In its closing statement, the prosecution recounted in grim detail the plot to ambush Sankara and his closest followers. Ballistics experts told the trial that Sankara had been shot in the chest at least seven times by assassins, using tracer rounds.

But the defendants said the victims died in a botched attempt to arrest Sankara after he and Compaore fell out over the direction the country’s revolution was taking.

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