Coordinates: 13°N 2°W / 13°N 2°W / 13; -2
Coat of arms
Motto: "Unité–Progrès–Justice" (French)
Une Seule Nuit
Une Seule Nuit / Ditanyè (French)
One Single Night / Hymn of Victory
Location of Burkina Faso (dark blue)
– in Africa (light blue & dark grey)
– in the African Union (light blue) –
and largest city
12°20′N 1°40′W / 12.333°N 1.667°W / 12.333; -1.667
Recognised national languages
Ethnic groups (1995)
Unitary semi-presidential republic
Roch Marc Christian Kaboré
• Prime Minister
Paul Kaba Thieba
• from France
5 August 1960
274,200 km2 (105,900 sq mi) (74th)
• Water (%)
• 2017 estimate
20,107,509  (61st)
• 2006 census
64/km2 (165.8/sq mi) (137th)
• Per capita
• Per capita
low · 185th
West African CFA franc (XOF)
Drives on the
ISO 3166 code
The data here is an estimation for the year 2005 produced by the
International Monetary Fund
International Monetary Fund in April 2005.
Burkina Faso (UK: /bɜːrˌkiːnə ˈfæsoʊ/, US:
/ˈfɑːsoʊ/ ( listen); French: [buʁkina faso]) is
a landlocked country in West Africa. It covers an area of around
274,200 square kilometres (105,900 sq mi) and is surrounded
by six countries:
Mali to the north;
Niger to the east;
Benin to the
Ghana to the south; and
Ivory Coast to the
southwest. Its capital is Ouagadougou. In 2014 its population was
estimated at just over 17.3 million.
Burkina Faso is a
francophone country, with French as an official language of government
and business. Formerly called the
Republic of Upper Volta
(1958–1984), the country was renamed "Burkina Faso" on 4 August
1984 by then-President Thomas Sankara. Its citizens are known as
Burkinabé (/bɜːrˈkiːnəbeɪ/ bur-KEE-nə-beh).
The northwestern part of present-day
Burkina Faso was populated by
hunter-gatherers from 14000 BC to 5000 BC. From the 3rd to the 13th
centuries AD, the
Bura culture existed in the territory of
Burkina Faso and southwestern Niger. Various
ethnic groups of present-day Burkina Faso, such as the Mossi, Fula and
Dyula, arrived in successive waves between the 8th and 15th centuries.
From the 11th century the
Mossi people established several separate
kingdoms. In the 1890s, during the European Scramble for Africa, the
Burkina Faso was invaded by France, and colonial control
was established following a war of conquest between 1896 and 1904. The
territory was made part of French West
Africa in 1904, and the colony
French Upper Volta
French Upper Volta was established on 1 March 1919. The colony
was named for its location on the upper courses of the Volta River
(the Black, Red and White Volta).
Republic of Upper Volta was established on 11 December 1958
as a self-governing colony within the French Community, and on
5 August 1960 it gained full independence, with Maurice Yaméogo
as President. After protests by students and labour unions, Yaméogo
was deposed in the 1966 coup d'état led by Sangoulé Lamizana, who
became President. His rule coincided with the
Sahel drought and
famine, and facing problems from the country's traditionally powerful
trade unions, he was deposed in the 1980 coup d'état led by Saye
Zerbo. Encountering resistance from trade unions again, Zerbo's
government was overthrown in the 1982 coup d'état led by
Jean-Baptiste Ouédraogo. The leader of the leftist faction of
Ouédraogo's government, Thomas Sankara, became Prime Minister but was
later imprisoned. Efforts to free him led to the popularly-supported
1983 coup d'état, in which he became President. Sankara
renamed the country
Burkina Faso and launched an ambitious
socioeconomic program which included a nationwide literacy campaign,
land redistribution to peasants, railway and road construction and the
outlawing of female genital mutilation, forced marriages and
polygamy. Sankara was overthrown and killed in the 1987 coup
d'état led by
Blaise Compaoré – deteriorating relations with
France and its ally the
Ivory Coast was the reason
given for the coup.
Blaise Compaoré became President and, after an alleged 1989
coup attempt, was later elected in 1991 and 1998, elections which were
boycotted by the opposition and received a considerably low turnout,
as well as in 2005. He remained head of state until he was ousted from
power by the popular youth upheaval of 31 October 2014,
after which he fled to the Ivory Coast.
Michel Kafando subsequently
became the transitional President of the country. On 16 September
2015 a military coup d'état against the Kafando government was
carried out by the Regiment of Presidential Security, the former
presidential guard of Compaoré. On 24 September 2015, after
pressure from the African Union,
ECOWAS and the armed forces, the
military junta agreed to step down, and
Michel Kafando was reinstated
as Acting President. In the general election held on 29 November
Roch Marc Christian Kaboré
Roch Marc Christian Kaboré won in the first round with 53.5% of
the vote and was sworn in as President on 29 December
2.2 Early history
2.3 From colony to independence (1890s–1958)
2.4 Upper Volta (1958–1984)
2.4.1 Lamizana's rule and multiple coups
2.4.2 1983 coup d'état
Burkina Faso (since 1984)
2.5.1 1987 coup d'état
2.5.2 October 2014 protests
2.5.3 2015 coup d'état
2.5.4 November 2015 election
3 Government and politics
3.1 Foreign relations
3.3 Law enforcement
4 Geography and climate
4.2 Administrative divisions
4.4 Wildlife and the environment
5 Economy and infrastructure
6 Science and technology
7.2 Ethnic groups
8.1 Arts and crafts
8.6 Cultural festivals and events
9 Food security
9.1 Causes of food insecurity
9.1.1 Social and economic
9.2 Current statistics
9.3 Approaches to improving food security
9.3.1 World Food Programme
9.3.2 World Bank
10 See also
13 Further reading
14 External links
Formerly called the
Republic of Upper Volta, the country was renamed
"Burkina Faso" on 4 August 1984 by then-President Thomas Sankara. The
words "Burkina" and "Faso" both stem from different languages spoken
in the country: "Burkina" comes from Mossi and means "upright" showing
how the people are proud of their integrity, while "Faso" comes from
Dyula language and means "fatherland" (lit. "father's house"). The
"bè" suffix added onto "Burkina" to form the demonym "Burkinabè"
comes from the
Fula language and means "men or women".
The French colony of Upper Volta was named for its location on the
upper courses of the
Volta River (the Black, Red and White Volta).
Main article: History of Burkina Faso
The northwestern part of today's
Burkina Faso was populated by
hunter-gatherers between 14,000 and 5,000 BC. Their tools, including
scrapers, chisels and arrowheads, were discovered in 1973 through
archaeological excavations.
were established between 3600 and 2600 BC. The
Bura culture was an Iron-Age civilization centred in the southwest
portion of modern-day
Niger and in the southeast part of contemporary
Burkina Faso. Iron industry, in smelting and forging for tools and
weapons, had developed in Sub-Saharan
Africa by 1200 BC.
Historians began to debate about the exact dates when Burkina Faso's
many ethnic groups arrived to the area. The Proto-Mossi arrived in the
far Eastern part of what is today
Burkina Faso sometime between the
8th and 11th centuries, the Samo arrived around the 15th
century, the Dogon lived in Burkina Faso's north and northwest
regions until sometime in the 15th or 16th centuries,[citation
needed] and many of the other ethnic groups that make up the country's
population arrived in the region during this time.
The cavalry of the
Mossi Kingdoms were experts at raiding deep into
enemy territory, even against the formidable
Armed men prevent the French explorer
Louis-Gustave Binger from
entering Sia (Bobo-Dioulasso) during his stay in April 1892.
Middle Ages the Mossi established several separate kingdoms
including those of Tenkodogo, Yatenga, Zandoma, and Ouagadougou.
Sometime between 1328 and 1338 Mossi warriors raided
Timbuktu but the
Mossi were defeated by
Sonni Ali of Songhai at the Battle of Kobi in
Mali in 1483.
During the early 16th century the Songhai conducted many slave raids
into what is today Burkina Faso. During the 18th century the
Gwiriko Empire was established at
Bobo Dioulasso and ethnic groups
such as the Dyan, Lobi, and Birifor settled along the Black Volta.
From colony to independence (1890s–1958)
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Starting in the early 1890s a series of British, French and German
military officers made attempts to claim parts of what is today
Burkina Faso. At times these colonialists and their armies fought the
local peoples; at times they forged alliances with them and made
treaties. The colonialist officers and their home governments also
made treaties amongst themselves. Through a complex series of events
Burkina Faso eventually became a French protectorate in
The eastern and western regions, where a standoff against the forces
of the powerful ruler
Samori Ture complicated the situation, came
under French occupation in 1897. By 1898, the majority of the
territory corresponding to
Burkina Faso was nominally conquered;
however, French control of many parts remained uncertain.[citation
The Franco-British Convention of 14 June 1898 created the
country's modern borders. In the French territory, a war of conquest
against local communities and political powers continued for about
five years. In 1904, the largely pacified territories of the Volta
basin were integrated into the Upper
Niger colony of
Africa as part of the reorganization of the French West
African colonial empire. The colony had its capital in Bamako.
The language of colonial administration and schooling became French.
The public education system started from humble origins. Advanced
education was provided for many years during the colonial period in
Draftees from the territory participated in the European fronts of
World War I
World War I in the battalions of the Senegalese Rifles. Between 1915
and 1916, the districts in the western part of what is now Burkina
Faso and the bordering eastern fringe of
Mali became the stage of one
of the most important armed oppositions to colonial government: the
The French government finally suppressed the movement but only after
suffering defeats. It also had to organize its largest expeditionary
force of its colonial history to send into the country to suppress the
insurrection. Armed opposition wracked the Sahelian north when the
Tuareg and allied groups of the Dori region ended their truce with the
The capital, Ouagadougou, in 1930
French Upper Volta
French Upper Volta was established on 1 March 1919. The French
feared a recurrence of armed uprising and had related economic
considerations. To bolster its administration, the colonial government
separated the present territory of
Burkina Faso from Upper
The new colony was named Haute Volta, and François Charles Alexis
Édouard Hesling became its first governor. Hesling initiated an
ambitious road-making program to improve infrastructure and promoted
the growth of cotton for export. The cotton policy – based on
coercion – failed, and revenue generated by the colony stagnated.
The colony was dismantled on 5 September 1932, being split
between the French colonies of Ivory Coast,
French Sudan and Niger.
Ivory Coast received the largest share, which contained most of the
population as well as the cities of
Ouagadougou and Bobo-Dioulasso.
France reversed this change during the period of intense anti-colonial
agitation that followed the end of World War II. On 4 September
1947, it revived the colony of Upper Volta, with its previous
boundaries, as a part of the French Union. The French designated its
colonies as departments of metropolitan
France on the European
On 11 December 1958 the colony achieved self-government as the
Republic of Upper Volta; it joined the Franco-African Community. A
revision in the organization of French Overseas Territories had begun
with the passage of the Basic Law (Loi Cadre) of 23 July 1956.
This act was followed by reorganization measures approved by the
French parliament early in 1957 to ensure a large degree of
self-government for individual territories. Upper Volta became an
autonomous republic in the French community on 11 December 1958.
Full independence from
France was received in 1960.
Upper Volta (1958–1984)
Maurice Yaméogo, the first President of Upper Volta, examines
documents of ratifying the country's independence in 1960
Republic of Upper Volta
Republic of Upper Volta (French: République de Haute-Volta) was
established on 11 December 1958 as a self-governing colony within
the French Community. The name Upper Volta related to the nation's
location along the upper reaches of the Volta River. The river's three
tributaries are called the Black, White and Red Volta. These were
expressed in the three colors of the former national flag.
Before attaining autonomy, it had been
French Upper Volta
French Upper Volta and part of
the French Union. On 5 August 1960, it attained full independence
from France. The first president, Maurice Yaméogo, was the leader of
Voltaic Democratic Union
Voltaic Democratic Union (UDV). The 1960 constitution provided for
election by universal suffrage of a president and a national assembly
for five-year terms. Soon after coming to power, Yaméogo banned all
political parties other than the UDV. The government lasted until
1966. After much unrest, including mass demonstrations and strikes by
students, labor unions, and civil servants, the military intervened.
Lamizana's rule and multiple coups
The 1966 military coup deposed Yaméogo, suspended the constitution,
dissolved the National Assembly, and placed Lt. Col. Sangoulé
Lamizana at the head of a government of senior army officers. The army
remained in power for four years. On 14 June 1976, the Voltans
ratified a new constitution that established a four-year transition
period toward complete civilian rule. Lamizana remained in power
throughout the 1970s as president of military or mixed civil-military
governments. Lamizana's rule coincided with the beginning of the Sahel
drought and famine which had a devastating impact on Upper Volta and
neighboring countries. After conflict over the 1976 constitution, a
new constitution was written and approved in 1977. Lamizana was
re-elected by open elections in 1978.
Lamizana's government faced problems with the country's traditionally
powerful trade unions, and on 25 November 1980, Col. Saye Zerbo
overthrew President Lamizana in a bloodless coup. Colonel Zerbo
established the Military Committee of Recovery for National Progress
as the supreme governmental authority, thus eradicating the 1977
Colonel Zerbo also encountered resistance from trade unions and was
overthrown two years later by Maj. Dr.
Jean-Baptiste Ouédraogo and
the Council of Popular Salvation (CSP) in the 1982 Upper Voltan coup
d'état. The CSP continued to ban political parties and organizations,
yet promised a transition to civilian rule and a new
1983 coup d'état
Infighting developed between the right and left factions of the CSP.
The leader of the leftists, Capt. Thomas Sankara, was appointed prime
minister in January 1983, but subsequently arrested. Efforts to
free him, directed by Capt. Blaise Compaoré, resulted in a military
coup d'état on 4 August 1983.
The coup brought Sankara to power and his government began to
implement a series of revolutionary programs which included
mass-vaccinations, infrastructure improvements, the expansion of
women's rights, encouragement of domestic agricultural consumption and
Burkina Faso (since 1984)
On 4 August 1984, on President Sankara's initiative, the
country's name was changed from Upper Volta to
Burkina Faso or land of
the honest men; (the literal translation is land of the upright
Pioneers of the Revolution, c. 1985
Sankara's government formed the National Council for the Revolution
(CNR), with Sankara as its president, and established popular
Committees for the Defense of the Revolution (CDRs). The Pioneers of
the Revolution youth programme was also established.
Sankara launched an ambitious socioeconomic programme for change, one
of the largest ever undertaken on the African continent. His
foreign policies were centred on anti-imperialism, his government
denying all foreign aid, pushing for odious debt reduction,
nationalising all land and mineral wealth and averting the power and
influence of the
International Monetary Fund
International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. His
domestic policies included a nationwide literacy campaign, land
redistribution to peasants, railway and road construction and the
outlawing of female genital mutilation, forced marriages and
Sankara pushed for agrarian self-sufficiency and promoted public
health by vaccinating 2,500,000 children against meningitis, yellow
fever, and measles. His national agenda also included planting
over 10,000,000 trees to halt the growing desertification of the
Sahel. Sankara called on every village to build a medical dispensary
and had over 350 communities build schools with their own
1987 coup d'état
On 15 October 1987, Sankara, along with twelve other officials, was
killed in a coup d'état organized by Blaise Compaoré, Sankara's
former colleague and Burkina Faso's president until
October 2014. After the coup and although Sankara was known
to be dead, some CDRs mounted an armed resistance to the army for
several days. A majority of Burkinabé citizens hold
that France's foreign ministry, the Quai d'Orsay, was behind Compaoré
in organizing the coup.
Deterioration in relations with neighbouring countries was one of the
reasons given by Compaoré for the coup. Compaoré argued that
Sankara had jeopardised foreign relations with the former colonial
France and neighbouring
Ivory Coast (both of which supported the
change in government). Following the coup
Compaoré immediately reversed the nationalizations, overturned nearly
all of Sankara's policies, returned the country back into the IMF
fold, and ultimately spurned most of Sankara's legacy. Limited
democratic reforms were introduced in 1990 by Compaoré. Under the new
constitution, Compaoré was re-elected without opposition in 1991. In
1998 Compaoré won election in a landslide. In 2004, 13 people were
tried for plotting a coup against President Compaoré and the coup's
alleged mastermind was sentenced to life imprisonment. As of
Burkina Faso remains one of the least developed
countries in the world.
Compaoré's government had played the role of negotiator in several
West-African disputes including the 2010–11 Ivorian crisis, the
Inter-Togolese Dialogue, and the 2012 Malian Crisis.
Between February and April 2011, the death of a schoolboy
provoked protests throughout the country, coupled with a military
mutiny and a magistrates' strike.
October 2014 protests
Main article: 2014 Burkinabé uprising
Starting on 28 October 2014 protesters began to march and
Ouagadougou against President
Blaise Compaoré who
appeared ready to amend the constitution and extend his 27-year rule.
On 30 October, some protesters set fire to the parliament and
took over the national TV headquarters.
Airport was closed and MPs suspended the vote on changing the
constitution to allow Compaoré to stand for re-election in 2015.
Later in the day, the military dissolved all government institutions
and set a curfew.
On 31 October 2014, President Compaoré, facing mounting
pressure, resigned after 27 years in office. Lt. Col. Isaac
Zida said that he would lead the country during its transitional
period before the planned 2015 presidential election but there were
concerns over his close ties to the former president. In
November 2014 opposition parties, civil society groups and
religious leaders adopted a plan for a transitional authority to guide
Burkina Faso to elections. Under the plan
Michel Kafando was made
President of Burkina Faso
President of Burkina Faso and Lt. Col. Zida became
the acting Prime Minister and Defense Minister.
2015 coup d'état
Main article: 2015 Burkinabé coup d'état
In September 2015, the
Regiment of Presidential Security
Regiment of Presidential Security (RSP)
seized the country's president and prime minister, and declared the
National Council for Democracy the new national government.
However, on 22 September 2015, the coup leader, Gilbert
Diendéré, apologized and promised to restore the civilian
government. On 23 September 2015, the prime minister and
interim president were restored to power.
November 2015 election
Main article: Burkinabé general election, 2015
General elections were held in
Burkina Faso on 29 November 2015. Roch
Marc Christian Kaboré won the election in the first round with 53.5%
of the vote, defeating businessman
Zéphirin Diabré who took
29.7%. Kaboré was sworn in as President on 29 December
Government and politics
Blaise Compaoré ruled
Burkina Faso from a coup d'état in
1987 until he lost power in 2014.
The National Assembly building in downtown Ouagadougou
Main article: Politics of Burkina Faso
See also: 2015 Burkinabe coup d'état
With French help,
Blaise Compaoré seized power in a coup d'état in
1987. He overthrew his long-time friend and ally Thomas Sankara, who
was killed in the coup.
The constitution of 2 June 1991 established a semi-presidential
government: its parliament could be dissolved by the President of the
Republic, who was to be elected for a term of seven years. In 2000,
the constitution was amended to reduce the presidential term to five
years and set term limits to two, preventing successive re-election.
The amendment took effect during the 2005 elections. If passed
beforehand, it would have prevented Compaoré from being reelected.
Other presidential candidates challenged the election results. But in
October 2005, the constitutional council ruled that, because
Compaoré was the sitting president in 2000, the amendment would not
apply to him until the end of his second term in office. This cleared
the way for his candidacy in the 2005 election. On 13 November
2005, Compaoré was reelected in a landslide, because of a divided
In the 2010 Presidential elections, President Compaoré was
re-elected. Only 1.6 million Burkinabés voted, out of a total
population 10 times that size.
2011 Burkinabè protests
2011 Burkinabè protests were a series of popular protests that
called for the resignation of Compaoré, democratic reforms, higher
wages for troops and public servants and economic freedom.
As a result, Governors were replaced and wages for public servants
The parliament consisted of one chamber known as the National Assembly
which had 111 seats with members elected to serve five-year
terms. There was also a constitutional chamber, composed of ten
members, and an economic and social council whose roles were purely
consultative. The 1991 constitution created a bicameral parliament but
the upper house (Chamber of Representatives) was abolished in 2002.
The Compaoré administration had worked to decentralize power by
devolving some of its powers to regions and municipal authorities. But
the widespread distrust of politicians and lack of political
involvement by many residents complicated this process. Critics
described this as a hybrid decentralisation.
Political freedoms are severely restricted in Burkina Faso. Human
rights organizations had criticised the Compaoré administration for
numerous acts of state-sponsored violence against journalists and
other politically active members of society.
In mid-September 2015 the Kafando government, along with the rest
of the post-October 2014 political order, was temporarily
overthrown in a coup attempt by the Regiment of Presidential Security
(RSP). They installed
Gilbert Diendéré as chairman of the new
National Council for Democracy. On 23 September 2015, the
prime minister and interim president were restored to power.
The national elections were subsequently rescheduled for
Kaboré won the election in the first round of voting, receiving 53.5%
of the vote against 29.7% for the second place candidate, Zephirin
Diabré. He was sworn in as President on 29 December
Further information: Foreign relations of Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso is a member of the African Union, Community of
Sahel-Saharan States, La Francophonie, Organisation of Islamic
Cooperation, Economic Community of West African States, and United
Main article: Military of Burkina Faso
The army consists of some 6,000 men in voluntary service,
augmented by a part-time national People's Militia composed of
civilians between 25 and 35 years of age who are trained in both
military and civil duties. According to Jane’s Sentinel Country Risk
Assessment, Burkina Faso's Army is undermanned for its force structure
and poorly equipped, but has wheeled light-armour vehicles, and may
have developed useful combat expertise through interventions in
Liberia and elsewhere in Africa.
In terms of training and equipment, the regular Army is believed to be
neglected in relation to the élite Regiment of Presidential Security
(French: Régiment de la Sécurité Présidentielle – RSP). Reports
have emerged in recent years of disputes over pay and conditions.
There is an air force with some 19 operational aircraft, but no
navy, as the country is landlocked. Military expenses constitute
approximately 1.2% of the nation’s GDP.
In April 2011, there was an army mutiny; the president named new
chiefs of staff, and a curfew was imposed in Ouagadougou.
Main article: Law enforcement in Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso employs numerous police and security forces, generally
modeled after organizations used by French police.
France continues to
provide significant support and training to police forces. The
Gendarmerie Nationale is organized along military lines, with most
police services delivered at the brigade level. The Gendarmerie
operates under the authority of the Minister of Defence, and its
members are employed chiefly in the rural areas and along borders.
There is a municipal police force controlled by the Ministry of
Territorial Administration; a national police force controlled by the
Ministry of Security; and an autonomous Regiment of Presidential
Security (Régiment de la Sécurité Présidentielle, or RSP), a
‘palace guard’ devoted to the protection of the President of the
Republic. Both the gendarmerie and the national police are subdivided
into both administrative and judicial police functions; the former are
detailed to protect public order and provide security, the latter are
charged with criminal investigations.
All foreigners and citizens are required to carry photo ID passports,
or other forms of identification or risk a fine, and police spot
identity checks are commonplace for persons traveling by auto,
bush-taxi, or bus.
Geography and climate
Satellite image of Burkina Faso.
Main article: Geography of Burkina Faso
Map of Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso lies mostly between latitudes 9° and 15°N (a small area
is north of 15°), and longitudes 6°W and 3°E.
It is made up of two major types of countryside. The larger part of
the country is covered by a peneplain, which forms a gently undulating
landscape with, in some areas, a few isolated hills, the last vestiges
Precambrian massif. The southwest of the country, on the other
hand, forms a sandstone massif, where the highest peak, Ténakourou,
is found at an elevation of 749 meters (2,457 ft). The massif is
bordered by sheer cliffs up to 150 m (492 ft) high. The
average altitude of
Burkina Faso is 400 m (1,312 ft) and the
difference between the highest and lowest terrain is no greater than
600 m (1,969 ft).
Burkina Faso is therefore a relatively
The country owes its former name of Upper Volta to three rivers which
cross it: the
Black Volta (or Mouhoun), the
White Volta (Nakambé) and
Red Volta (Nazinon). The
Black Volta is one of the country's only
two rivers which flow year-round, the other being the Komoé, which
flows to the southwest. The basin of the
Niger River also drains 27%
of the country's surface.
The Niger's tributaries – the Béli, Gorouol, Goudébo, and Dargol
– are seasonal streams and flow for only four to six months a year.
They still can flood and overflow, however. The country also contains
numerous lakes – the principal ones are Tingrela, Bam, and Dem. The
country contains large ponds, as well, such as Oursi, Béli, Yomboli,
and Markoye. Water shortages are often a problem, especially in the
north of the country.
Savannah near the Gbomblora Department, on the road from
Main articles: Regions of Burkina Faso, Provinces of Burkina Faso, and
Departments of Burkina Faso
The country is divided into 13 administrative regions. These
regions encompass 45 provinces and 301 departments. Each
region is administered by a Governor.
Further information: Climate of Burkina Faso
Map of Köppen climate classification
Burkina Faso has a primarily tropical climate with two very distinct
seasons. In the rainy season, the country receives between 60 and
90 cm (23.6 and 35.4 in) of rainfall; in the dry season, the
harmattan – a hot dry wind from the
Sahara – blows. The rainy
season lasts approximately four months, May/June through September,
and is shorter in the north of the country. Three climatic zones can
be defined: the Sahel, the Sudan-Sahel, and the Sudan-Guinea. The
Sahel in the north typically receives less than 60 cm
(23.6 in) of rainfall per year and has high
temperatures, 5–47 °C (41–117 °F).
A relatively dry tropical savanna, the
Sahel extends beyond the
borders of Burkina Faso, from the Horn of
Africa to the Atlantic
Ocean, and borders the
Sahara to its north and the fertile region of
Sudan to the South. Situated between 11°3' and 13°5' north
latitude, the Sudan-
Sahel region is a transitional zone with regards
to rainfall and temperature. Further to the south, the Sudan-Guinea
zone receives more than 90 cm (35.4 in) of rain each
year and has cooler average temperatures.
Burkina Faso's natural resources include gold, manganese, limestone,
marble, phosphates, pumice, and salt.
Wildlife and the environment
Further information: Wildlife of Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso has a larger number of elephants than many countries in
West Africa. Lions, leopards and buffalo can also be found here,
including the dwarf or red buffalo, a smaller reddish-brown animal
which looks like a fierce kind of short-legged cow. Other large
predators live in Burkina Faso, such as the cheetah, the caracal or
African lynx, the spotted hyena and the African wild dog, one of the
continent’s most endangered species.
Burkina Faso's fauna and flora are protected in four national parks:
The W National Park in the east which passes Burkina Faso, Benin, and
The Arly Wildlife Reserve (Arly National Park in the east)
The Léraba-Comoé Classified Forest and Partial Reserve of Wildlife
in the west
The Mare aux Hippopotames in the west
and several reserves: see List of national parks in
Africa and Nature
reserves of Burkina Faso.
Economy and infrastructure
Main article: Economy of Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso's exports in 2009. Every year gold and cotton constitute
more than 70% of the country's exports and the prices of these
commodities have fluctuated significantly in the past 10 years. See
the 2016 figure
The value of Burkina Faso's exports fell from $2.77 billion in
2011 to $754 million in 2012. Agriculture represents 32% of
its gross domestic product and occupies 80% of the working population.
It consists mostly of rearing livestock. Especially in the south and
southwest, the people grow crops of sorghum, pearl millet, maize
(corn), peanuts, rice and cotton, with surpluses to be sold. A large
part of the economic activity of the country is funded by
Burkina Faso was ranked the 111th safest investment destination
in the world in the March 2011 Euromoney Country Risk
rankings. Remittances used to be an important source of income to
Burkina Faso until the 1990s, when unrest in Ivory Coast, the main
destination for Burkinabe emigrants, forced many to return home.
Remittances now account for less than 1% of GDP.
Burkina Faso is part of the West African Monetary and Economic Union
(UMEOA) and has adopted the CFA franc. This is issued by the Central
Bank of the West African States (BCEAO), situated in Dakar, Senegal.
The BCEAO manages the monetary and reserve policy of the member
states, and provides regulation and oversight of financial sector and
banking activity. A legal framework regarding licensing, bank
activities, organizational and capital requirements, inspections and
sanctions (all applicable to all countries of the Union) is in place,
having been reformed significantly in 1999.
are governed by a separate law, which regulates microfinance
activities in all WAEMU countries. The insurance sector is regulated
through the Inter-African Conference on Insurance Markets (CIMA).
Processing facilities at the Essakane Mine in Burkina Faso
There is mining of copper, iron, manganese, gold, cassiterite (tin
ore), and phosphates. These operations provide employment and
generate international aid.
Gold production increased 32% in 2011 at
six gold mine sites, making
Burkina Faso the fourth-largest gold
producer in Africa, after South Africa,
Mali and Ghana.
Burkina Faso also hosts the International Art and Craft Fair,
Ouagadougou. It is better known by its French name as SIAO, Le Salon
International de l' Artisanat de Ouagadougou, and is one of the most
important African handicraft fairs.
Burkina Faso is a member of the Organization for the Harmonization of
Business Law in
The Grand marché in Koudougou, Burkina Faso
While services remain underdeveloped, the National Office for Water
and Sanitation (ONEA), a state-owned utility company run along
commercial lines, is emerging as one of the best-performing utility
companies in Africa. High levels of autonomy and a skilled and
dedicated management have driven ONEA's ability to improve production
of and access to clean water.
Since 2000, nearly 2 million more people have access to water in
the four principal urban centres in the country; the company has kept
the quality of infrastructure high (less than 18% of the water is lost
through leaks – one of the lowest in sub-Saharan Africa), improved
financial reporting, and increased its annual revenue by an average of
12% (well above inflation). Challenges remain, including
difficulties among some customers in paying for services, with the
need to rely on international aid to expand its infrastructure.
The state-owned, commercially run venture has helped the nation reach
Millennium Development Goal
Millennium Development Goal (MDG) targets in water-related areas,
and has grown as a viable company.
A 33-megawatt solar power plant in Zagtouli, near Ouagadougou, came
online in late November, 2017. At the time of its construction, it was
the largest solar power facility in West Africa.
The growth rate in
Burkina Faso is high although it continues to be
plagued by corruption and incursions from terrorist groups from Mali
The railway station in
Bobo Dioulasso was built during the colonial
era and remains in operation.
Main article: Transport in Burkina Faso
Transport in Burkina Faso
Transport in Burkina Faso is hampered by a largely underdeveloped
The main airport is at
Ouagadougou and as of June 2014 it had
regularly scheduled flights to many destinations in West
well as Paris,
Brussels and Istanbul. There is another international
Bobo Dioulasso which has flights to
Rail transport in Burkina Faso
Rail transport in Burkina Faso consists of a single line which runs
from Kaya to
Ivory Coast via Ouagadougou, Koudougou, Bobo
Dioulasso and Banfora. Sitarail operates a passenger train three times
a week along the route.
There are 12,506 kilometres of highway in Burkina Faso, of which
2,001 kilometres are paved.
Science and technology
Main article: Science and technology in Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso spent 0.20% of GDP on research and development
(R&D), one of the lowest ratios in West Africa. There were 48
researchers (in full-time equivalents) per million inhabitants in
2010, which is more than twice the average for sub-Saharan
per million population in 2013) and higher than the ratio for Ghana
Nigeria (39). It is, however, much lower than the ratio for
Senegal (361 per million inhabitants). In
Burkina Faso in 2010, 46% of
researchers were working in the health sector, 16% in engineering, 13%
in natural sciences, 9% in agricultural sciences, 7% in the humanities
and 4% in social sciences.
In January 2011, the government created the Ministry of Scientific
Research and Innovation. Up until then, management of science,
technology and innovation had fallen under the Department of Secondary
and Higher Education and Scientific Research. Within this ministry,
the Directorate General for Research and Sector Statistics is
responsible for planning. A separate body, the Directorate General of
Scientific Research, Technology and Innovation, co-ordinates research.
This is a departure from the pattern in many other West African
countries where a single body fulfils both functions. The move signals
the government's intention to make science and technology a
Burkina Faso adopted a National Policy for Scientific and
Technical Research, the strategic objectives of which are to develop
R&D and the application and commercialization of research results.
The policy also makes provisions for strengthening the ministry’s
strategic and operational capacities. One of the key priorities is to
improve food security and self-sufficiency by boosting capacity in
agricultural and environmental sciences. The creation of a centre of
excellence in 2014 at the International Institute of Water and
Environmental Engineering in
Ouagadougou within the
World Bank project
provides essential funding for capacity-building in these priority
A dual priority is to promote innovative, effective and accessible
health systems. The government wishes to develop, in parallel, applied
sciences and technology and social and human sciences. To complement
the national research policy, the government has prepared a National
Strategy to Popularize Technologies, Inventions and Innovations (2012)
and a National Innovation Strategy (2014). Other policies also
incorporate science and technology, such as that on Secondary and
Higher Education and Scientific Research (2010), the National Policy
on Food and Nutrition Security (2014) and the National Programme for
the Rural Sector (2011).
Burkina Faso passed the Science, Technology and Innovation
Act establishing three mechanisms for financing research and
innovation, a clear indication of high-level commitment. These
mechanisms are the National Fund for Education and Research, the
National Fund for Research and Innovation for Development and the
Forum of Scientific Research and Technological Innovation.
A Burkinabe Tuareg man in Ouagadougou
Main article: Demographics of Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso is an ethnically integrated, secular state. Most of
Burkina's people are concentrated in the south and center of the
country, where their density sometimes exceeds 48 persons per
square kilometer (125/sq. mi.). Hundreds of thousands of
Burkinabe migrate regularly to
Ivory Coast and Ghana, mainly for
seasonal agricultural work. These flows of workers are affected by
external events; the September 2002 coup attempt in Ivory Coast
and the ensuing fighting meant that hundreds of thousands of Burkinabe
returned to Burkina Faso. The regional economy suffered when they were
unable to work.
The total fertility rate of
Burkina Faso is 5.93 children born
per woman (2014 estimates), the sixth highest in the world.
In 2009 the U.S. Department of State's Trafficking in Persons Report
reported that slavery in
Burkina Faso continued to exist and that
Burkinabè children were often the victims. Slavery in the Sahel
states in general, is an entrenched institution with a long history
that dates back to the Arab slave trade.
Largest cities or towns in Burkina Faso
1 086 505
Boucle du Mouhoun
Ethnic groups in Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso's 17.3 million people belong to two major West
African ethnic cultural groups—the Voltaic and the Mande (whose
common language is Dioula). The Voltaic Mossi make up about one-half
of the population. The Mossi claim descent from warriors who migrated
Burkina Faso from northern
Ghana around 1100 AD.
They established an empire that lasted more than 800 years.
Predominantly farmers, the Mossi kingdom is led by the Mogho Naba,
whose court is in Ouagadougou.
Further information: Languages of Burkina Faso
Burkina Faso is a multilingual country. An estimated 69 languages
are spoken there, of which about 60 languages are indigenous.
Mossi language (Mossi: Mòoré) is spoken by about 40% of the
population, mainly in the central region around the capital,
Ouagadougou, along with other, closely related
scattered throughout Burkina.
In the west,
Mande languages are widely spoken, the most predominant
being Dyula (also known as Jula or Dioula), others including Bobo,
Samo, and Marka. The
Fula language (Fula: Fulfulde, French: Peuhl) is
widespread, particularly in the north. The
Gourmanché language is
spoken in the east, while the
Bissa language is spoken in the south.
The official language is French, which was introduced during the
colonial period. French is the principal language of administrative,
political and judicial institutions, public services, and the press.
It is the only language for laws, administration and courts.
Religion in Burkina Faso
Religion in Burkina Faso (2006)
Indigenous beliefs (15.3%)
Irreligious and others (1.0%)
The Grand Mosque of Bobo-Dioulasso
Main article: Religion in Burkina Faso
Statistics on religion in
Burkina Faso are inexact because
Christianity are often practiced in tandem with indigenous religious
Government of Burkina Faso
Government of Burkina Faso 2006 census reported that
60.5% of the population practice Islam, and that the majority of this
group belong to the
Sunni branch, while a small minority
Shia Islam. There are also large concentrations of the
A significant number of
Sunni Muslims identify with the
order. The government estimated that 23.2% of the population are
Christians (19% being Roman Catholics and 4.2% members of Protestant
denominations); 15.3% follow traditional indigenous beliefs, 0.6% have
other religions, and 0.4% have none.
Main article: Health in Burkina Faso
In 2012, the average life expectancy was estimated at 57 for male and
59 for female. The under five mortality rate and the infant mortality
rate were respectively 102 and 66 per 1000 live births.
In 2014, the median age of its inhabitants is 17 and the estimated
population growth rate is 3.05%.
In 2011, health expenditures was 6.5% of GDP; the maternal mortality
ratio was estimated at 300 deaths per 100000 live births and
the physician density at 0.05 per 1000 population in 2010.
In 2012, it was estimated that the adult
HIV prevalence rate
(ages 15–49) was 1.0%. According to the 2011 UNAIDS Report,
HIV prevalence is declining among pregnant women who attend antenatal
clinics. According to a 2005 World Health Organization
report, an estimated 72.5% of Burkina Faso's girls and women have had
female genital mutilation, administered according to traditional
Central government spending on health was 3% in 2001. As of
2009[update], studies estimated there were as few as
10 physicians per 100,000 people. In addition, there
were 41 nurses and 13 midwives per 100,000 people.
Demographic and Health Surveys has completed three surveys in Burkina
Faso since 1993, and had another in 2009.
A recent Dengue fever outbreak in 2016 killed 20 patients. Cases of
the disease were reported from all 12 districts of Ouagadougou.
Main article: Education in Burkina Faso
The Gando primary school. Its architect, Diébédo Francis Kéré,
Aga Khan Award for Architecture
Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 2004.
Education in Burkina Faso
Education in Burkina Faso is divided into primary, secondary and
higher education. High school costs approximately CFA 25,000
($50 USD) per year, which is far above the means of most Burkinabè
families. Boys receive preference in schooling; as such, girls'
education and literacy rates are far lower than their male
counterparts. An increase in girls' schooling has been observed
because of the government's policy of making school cheaper for girls
and granting them more scholarships.
To proceed from elementary to middle school, middle to high school or
high school to college, national exams must be passed. Institutions of
higher education include the University of Ouagadougou, The
Polytechnic University of Bobo-Dioulasso, and the University of
Koudougou, which is also a teacher training institution. There are
some small private colleges in the capital city of
these are affordable to only a small portion of the population.
There is also the International School of
Ouagadougou (ISO), an
American-based private school located in Ouagadougou.
The 2008 UN Development Program Report ranked
Burkina Faso as the
country with the lowest level of literacy in the world, despite a
concerted effort to double its literacy rate from 12.8% in 1990 to
25.3% in 2008.
Main article: Culture of Burkina Faso
A masked Winiama dancer, ca.1970
Literature in Burkina Faso
Literature in Burkina Faso is based on the oral tradition, which
remains important. In 1934, during French occupation, Dim-Dolobsom
Ouedraogo published his Maximes, pensées et devinettes mossi
(Maximes, Thoughts and Riddles of the Mossi), a record of the oral
history of the Mossi people.
The oral tradition continued to have an influence on Burkinabè
writers in the post-independence
Burkina Faso of the 1960s, such as
Nazi Boni and Roger Nikiema. The 1960s saw a growth in the number
of playwrights being published. Since the 1970s, literature has
Burkina Faso with many more writers being published.
The theatre of
Burkina Faso combines traditional Burkinabè
performance with the colonial influences and post-colonial efforts to
educate rural people to produce a distinctive national theatre.
Traditional ritual ceremonies of the many ethnic groups in Burkina
Faso have long involved dancing with masks. Western-style theatre
became common during colonial times, heavily influenced by French
theatre. With independence came a new style of theatre inspired by
forum theatre aimed at educating and entertaining Burkina Faso's rural
Arts and crafts
Main article: Art of Burkina Faso
Artisan garland of decorative painted gourds in Ouagadougou.
In addition to several rich traditional artistic heritages among the
peoples, there is a large artist community in Burkina Faso, especially
in Ouagadougou. Much of the crafts produced are for the growing
Main article: Burkinabé cuisine
A plate of fufu (right) accompanied with peanut soup.
Typical of West African cuisine, Burkina Faso's cuisine is based on
staple foods of sorghum, millet, rice, maize, peanuts, potatoes,
beans, yams and okra. The most common sources of animal protein
are chicken, chicken eggs and fresh water fish. A typical Burkinabè
beverage is Banji or Palm Wine, which is fermented palm sap; and
Zoom-kom, or "grain water" purportedly the national drink of Burkina
Faso. Zoom-kom is milky-looking and whitish, having a water and cereal
base, best drunk with ice cubes. In the more rural regions, in the
outskirts of Burkina, you would find Dolo, which is drink made from
Main article: Cinema of Burkina Faso
The cinema of
Burkina Faso is an important part of West African and
African film industry. Burkina's contribution to African cinema
started with the establishment of the film festival
Panafricain du Cinéma et de la Télévision de Ouagadougou), which
was launched as a film week in 1969. Many of the nation's filmmakers
are known internationally and have won international prizes.
For many years the headquarters of the Federation of Panafrican
Filmmakers (FEPACI) was in Ouagadougou, rescued in 1983 from a period
of moribund inactivity by the enthusiastic support and funding of
President Sankara. (In 2006 the Secretariat of FEPACI moved to South
Africa, but the headquarters of the organization is still in
Ouagadougou.) Among the best known directors from
Burkina Faso are
Idrissa Ouedraogo and Dani Kouyate. Burkina
produces popular television series such as Les Bobodiouf. The
internationally known filmmakers such as Ouedraogo, Kabore, Yameogo,
and Kouyate make popular television series.
Burkina Faso national football team
Burkina Faso national football team in white playing a football match.
Main article: Sport in Burkina Faso
Sport in Burkina Faso
Sport in Burkina Faso is widespread and includes football (soccer),
basketball, cycling, rugby union, handball, tennis, boxing and martial
arts. Football is very popular in Burkina Faso, played both
professionally, and informally in towns and villages across the
country. The national team is nicknamed "Les Etalons" ("the
Stallions") in reference to the legendary horse of Princess Yennenga.
Burkina Faso hosted the
Africa Cup of Nations for which the
Omnisport Stadium in
Bobo-Dioulasso was built. In 2013, Burkina Faso
qualified for the African Cup of Nations in South Africa, reached the
final, but then lost to
Nigeria by the score of 0 to 1. The
country is currently ranked 53rd in the FIFA World Rankings.
Basketball is another sport which enjoys much popularity for both men
and women. The country's national team had its most successful
year in 2013 when it qualified for the AfroBasket, the continent's
prime basketball event.
A member of the Burkinabé media at work in Ouagadougou.
Media of Burkina Faso
Media of Burkina Faso and Communications in Burkina
The nation's principal media outlet is its state-sponsored combined
television and radio service, Radiodiffusion-Télévision Burkina
(RTB). RTB broadcasts on two medium-wave (AM) and several FM
frequencies. Besides RTB, there are privately owned sports, cultural,
music, and religious FM radio stations. RTB maintains a worldwide
short-wave news broadcast (Radio Nationale Burkina) in the French
language from the capital at
Ouagadougou using a 100 kW
transmitter on 4.815 and 5.030 MHz.
Attempts to develop an independent press and media in Burkina Faso
have been intermittent. In 1998, investigative journalist Norbert
Zongo, his brother Ernest, his driver, and another man were
assassinated by unknown assailants, and the bodies burned. The crime
was never solved. However, an independent Commission of Inquiry
later concluded that
Norbert Zongo was killed for political reasons
because of his investigative work into the death of David Ouedraogo, a
chauffeur who worked for François Compaoré, President Blaise
In January 1999, François Compaoré was charged with the murder
of David Ouedraogo, who had died as a result of torture in
January 1998. The charges were later dropped by a military
tribunal after an appeal. In August 2000, five members of the
President's personal security guard detail (Régiment de la Sécurité
Présidentielle, or RSP) were charged with the murder of Ouedraogo.
RSP members Marcel Kafando, Edmond Koama, and Ousseini Yaro,
investigated as suspects in the
Norbert Zongo assassination, were
convicted in the Ouedraogo case and sentenced to lengthy prison
Since the death of Norbert Zongo, several protests regarding the Zongo
investigation and treatment of journalists have been prevented or
dispersed by government police and security forces. In
April 2007, popular radio reggae host Karim Sama, whose programs
feature reggae songs interspersed with critical commentary on alleged
government injustice and corruption, received several death
Sama's personal car was later burned outside the private radio station
Ouaga FM by unknown vandals. In response, the Committee to
Protect Journalists (CPJ) wrote to President Compaoré to request his
government investigate the sending of e-mailed death threats to
journalists and radio commentators in
Burkina Faso who were critical
of the government. In December 2008, police in Ouagadougou
questioned leaders of a protest march that called for a renewed
investigation into the unsolved Zongo assassination. Among the
marchers was Jean-Claude Meda, the president of the Association of
Journalists of Burkina Faso.
Cultural festivals and events
Every two years,
Ouagadougou hosts the Panafrican Film and Television
Ouagadougou (FESPACO), the largest
African cinema festival
on the continent (February, odd years).
Held every two years since 1988, the International Art and Craft Fair,
Ouagadougou (SIAO), is one of Africa's most important trade shows for
art and handicrafts (late October-early November, even years).
Also every two years, the Symposium de sculpture sur granit de Laongo
takes place on a site located about 35 kilometres (22 miles) from
Ouagadougou, in the province of Oubritenga.
The National Culture Week of Burkina Faso, better known by its French
name La Semaine Nationale de la culture (SNC), is one of the most
important cultural activities of Burkina Faso. It is a biennial event
which takes place every two years in Bobo Dioulasso, the
second-largest city in the country.
Festival International des Masques et des Arts
Festival International des Masques et des Arts (FESTIMA),
celebrating traditional masks, is held every two years in Dédougou.
A group of farmers in Tarfila, Burkina Faso.
Burkina Faso is faced with high levels of food insecurity. As
defined by the 1996 World Food Summit, "food security exists when all
people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient
safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and food
preferences for an active and healthy lifestyle." There has not
been much successful improvement on this issue of food security within
recent years. Burkina Faso's rapidly growing population (around
3.6% annually) continues to put a strain on the country's resources
and infrastructure, which can further limit accessibility to
food. Because the country is landlocked and prone to Natural
disasters, including drought and floods, many families struggle to
protect themselves from severe hunger. While recent harvest
productions have improved some, much of the population is still having
a hard time overcoming the continuous food and nutrition crises of the
Malnutrition is especially common in women and
children, with large amounts of the population suffering from stunted
growth and micronutrient deficiencies such as anemia. Food
insecurity has grown to be a structural problem in Burkina Faso, only
to be intensified by high food prices. All of these factors combined
with high poverty levels have left
Burkina Faso vulnerable to chronic
high levels of food insecurity and malnutrition.
Causes of food insecurity
Social and economic
Poverty continues to be strongly linked to food insecurity. As
one of the poorest countries in the world,
Burkina Faso has around
44.5% of its population living under the poverty line and ranked
183 out of 187 countries on the UNDP
Human Development Index
Human Development Index in
Human Development Index
Human Development Index is a measure of quality of
life, taking into account three main areas of human development:
longevity, education, and economic standard of living. These high
levels of poverty found in Burkina Faso, combined with the soaring
food prices of the global food crisis continue to contribute to
Burkina Faso's issue of food insecurity. The global food crisis
of 2007–2008 was a drastic surge in food prices that lead to high
rates of hunger, malnutrition, and political and economic instability
in nations across the globe. This strongly affected Burkina Faso
because around 80% of Burkina's population is rural, relying on
subsistence farming to make a living. For instance, when natural
disasters such as floods, droughts, or locust attacks occur and cause
crops to fail, farmers in
Burkina Faso become dependent on grain
purchases. Because of the global food crisis, local grain prices
dramatically increased, limiting farmers' access to grain through
Damage caused by the Dourtenga floodings in 2007.
Geographic and environmental causes can also play a significant role
in contributing to Burkina Faso's issue of food insecurity. As
the country is situated in the
Burkina Faso experiences
some of the most radical climatic variation in the world, ranging from
severe flooding to extreme drought. The unpredictable climatic
Burkina Faso citizens often face results in strong
difficulties in being able to rely on and accumulate wealth through
agricultural means. Burkina Faso's climate also renders its crops
vulnerable to insect attacks, including attacks from locusts and
crickets, which destroy crops and further inhibit food
production. Not only is most of the population of Burkina Faso
dependent on agriculture as a source of income, but they also rely on
the agricultural sector for food that will directly feed the
household. Due to the vulnerability of agriculture, more and more
families are having to look for other sources of non-farm income,
and often have to travel outside of their regional zone to find
According to the Global
Hunger Index, a multidimensional tool used to
measure and track a country's hunger levels,
Burkina Faso ranked
65 out of 78 countries in 2013. It is estimated that there
are currently over 1.5 million children who are at risk of food
insecurity in Burkina Faso, with around 350,000 children who are
in need of emergency medical assistance. However, only about a
third of these children will actually receive adequate medical
attention. Only 11.4 percent of children under the age of
two receive the daily recommended number of meals. Stunted growth
as a result of food insecurity is a severe problem in Burkina Faso,
affecting at least a third of the population from 2008 to 2012.
Additionally, stunted children, on average, tend to complete less
school than children with normal growth development, further
contributing to the low levels of education of the Burkina Faso
European Commission expects that approximately
500,000 children under age 5 in
Burkina Faso will suffer
from acute malnutrition in 2015, including around 149,000 who will
suffer from its most life-threatening form. Rates of
micronutrient deficiencies are also high. According to the
Demographic and Health Survey (DHS 2010), 49 percent of
women and 88 percent of children under the age of five suffer
from anemia. Forty percent of infant deaths can be attributed to
malnutrition, and in turn, these infant mortality rates have decreased
Burkina Faso's total work force by 13.6 percent, demonstrating
how food security affects more aspects of life beyond health.
These high rates of food insecurity and the accompanying effects are
even more prevalent in rural populations compared to urban ones, as
access to health services in rural areas is much more limited and
awareness and education of children's nutritional needs is lower.
Approaches to improving food security
World Food Programme
A woman waiting for food aid at a
World Food Programme
World Food Programme food
World Food Programme
World Food Programme has several projects it is working on that
are geared towards increasing food security in Burkina Faso. The
Protracted Relief and Recovery Operation 200509 (PRRO) was formed
to respond to the high levels of malnutrition in Burkina Faso,
following the food and nutrition crisis in 2012. The efforts of
this project are mostly geared towards the treatment and prevention of
malnutrition and include take home rations for the caretakers of those
children who are being treated for malnutrition. Additionally,
the activities of this operation contribute to families' abilities to
withstand future food crises. Better nutrition among the two most
vulnerable groups, young children and pregnant women, prepares them to
be able to respond better in times when food security is compromised,
such as in droughts.
The Country Programme (CP) has two parts: food and nutritional
assistance to people with HIV/AIDS, and a school feeding program for
all primary schools in the
Sahel region. The HIV/AIDS nutrition
program aims to better the nutritional recovery of those who are
living with HIV/AIDS and to protect at-risk children and orphans from
malnutrition and food security. As part of the school feeding
component, the Country Programme's goals are to increase enrollment
and attendance in schools in the
Sahel region, where enrollment rates
are below the national average. Furthermore, the program aims at
improving gender parity rates in these schools, by providing girls
with high attendance in the last two years of primary school with
take-home rations of cereals as an incentive to households,
encouraging them to send their girls to school.
World Bank logo
World Bank was established in 1944, and comprises five
institutions whose shared goals are to end extreme poverty by 2030 and
to promote shared prosperity by fostering income growth of the lower
forty percent of every country. One of the main projects the
World Bank is working on to reduce food insecurity in
Burkina Faso is
Agricultural Productivity and Food Security Project.
According to the World Bank, the objective of this project is to
"improve the capacity of poor producers to increase food production
and to ensure improved availability of food products in rural
Agricultural Productivity and Food Security Project
has three main parts. Its first component is to work towards the
improvement of food production, including financing grants and
providing 'voucher for work' programs for households who cannot pay
their contribution in cash. The project's next component involves
improving the ability of food products, particularly in rural
areas. This includes supporting the marketing of food products,
and aims to strengthen the capabilities of stakeholders to control the
variability of food products and supplies at local and national
levels. Lastly, the third component of this project focuses on
institutional development and capacity building. Its goal is to
reinforce the capacities of service providers and institutions who are
specifically involved in project implementation. The project's
activities aim to build capacities of service providers, strengthen
the capacity of food producer organizations, strengthen agricultural
input supply delivery methods, and manage and evaluate project
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Holidays in Burkina Faso
Index of Burkina Faso-related articles
List of cities in Burkina Faso
Music of Burkina Faso
Outline of Burkina Faso
Tourism in Burkina Faso
^ André, Géraldine (2007-05-31). "École, langues, cultures et
développement". Cahiers d'études africaines (in French). 47 (186):
Burkina Faso population projection". 2017. Retrieved 8 January
^ a b c d "Burkina Faso". International Monetary Fund.
^ "Distribution of family income – Gini index". The World Factbook.
CIA. Retrieved 1 September 2009.
^ "2016 Human Development Report" (PDF).
United Nations Development
Programme. 2016. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
^ CFA Franc BCEAO. Codes: XOF / 952
ISO 4217 currency names and code
elements Archived 7 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine.. ISO.
^ "burkina-faso noun – Definition, pictures, pronunciation and usage
notes Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary at
^ "Institut National de la statistique et de la démographie".
Archived from the original on 1 September 2014.
^ a b
Burkina Faso Salutes "Africa's Che"
Thomas Sankara by Mathieu
Bonkoungou, Reuters, Oct 17 2007
^ a b c d e f Thomas Sankara: The Upright Man by California Newsreel
^ a b c Commemorating
Thomas Sankara by Farid Omar, Group for Research
and Initiative for the Liberation of
Africa (GRILA), November 28, 2007
^ Violent Protests Topple Government in Burkina Faso, BBC.
^ Tens of thousands attend
Burkina Faso protest, Protesters voice
opposition to referendum that would allow Blaise Campaore to extend
his presidential term, Reuters, Last updated: 1 June 2014 01:34.
^ a b "
Burkina Faso coup: military says it now controls country after
The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph (Online edition). United
Kingdom. 17 September 2015. Retrieved 17 September 2015.
Burkina Faso coup:
Michel Kafando reinstated as president". BBC
World News. 23 September 2015. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
^ a b c Mathieu Bonkoungou and Nadoun Coulibaly, "Kabore wins Burkina
Faso presidential election", Reuters, 1 December 2015.
^ a b c "
Burkina Faso swears in new president, capping transition",
Agence France-Presse, 29 December 2015.
Africa – Ancient History UNTOLD. Forbidden Fruit Books LLC.
^ UNESCO World Heritage Centre. "Site archéologique de Bura".
^ Miller, D. E.; Van Der Merwe, N. J. (2009). "Early Metal Working in
Sub-Saharan Africa: A Review of Recent Research". The Journal of
African History. 35: 1–36. doi:10.1017/S0021853700025949.
^ Stuiver, Minze; van der Merwe, Nicolaas J. (1968). "Radiocarbon
Chronology of the
Iron Age in Sub-Saharan Africa". Current
Anthropology. 9 (1): 54–58. doi:10.1086/200878.
^ Rupley, p. 27
^ a b Rupley, p. 28
^ "Encyclopedia of the Nations." History. Advameg, Inc., n.d. Web.
8 October 2014.
^ Rupley, p. xxvioi
^ Rupley, p. xxvix
^ Rupley, pp. 30–33
^ Mahir Saul and Patrick Royer, West African Challenge to Empire, 2001
^ a b "More (Language of the Moose people) Phrase Book". World Digital
Library. Retrieved 16 February 2013.
^ Anyangwe, Carlson (2012). Revolutionary Overthrow of Constitutional
Orders in Africa. African Books Collective.
^ Kingfisher Geography Encyclopedia. ISBN 1-85613-582-9. Page 170
^ Manning, Patrick (1988).
Francophone Sub-Saharan Africa: 1880-198.
Cambridge: New York.
^ The name is an amalgam of More burkina ("honest", "upright", or
"incorruptible men") and Jula faso ("homeland"; literally "father's
house"). The "-be" suffix in the name for the people – Burkinabe –
comes from the Fula plural suffix for people, -ɓe.
^ X, Mr (2015-10-28). "Resurrecting
Thomas Sankara – My Blog". My
Blog. Retrieved 2017-04-25.
^ "Reviving Thomas Sankara's spirit". www.aljazeera.com. Retrieved
^ Kasuka, Bridgette (2011). African Leaders. 3rd Paragraph: Bankole
Kamara Taylor. p. 13. ISBN 978-1468114362. Retrieved 30
Burkina Faso Profile."
Burkina Faso Profile. BBC NEWS AFRICA,
21 March 2014. Web. 24 September 2014.
^ United Nation (2016). "List of Least Developed Countries" (PDF).
un.org. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-03-01.
BBC News –
Burkina Faso parliament set ablaze". BBC News.
Retrieved 30 October 2014.
Burkina Faso protesters set parliament on fire, take over state TV
and march on presidency". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 30
^ Gongo, Simon & Bax, Pauline. "
Burkina Faso General Takes Power
After President Resigns". Businessweek.com. Archived from the original
on 2 January 2015.
^ Herve, Taoko and Cowelloct, Alan (31 October 2014) Burkina
Faso’s President Resigns, and General Takes Reins. New York Times.
BBC News – Army backs new
Burkina Faso leader Isaac Zida". BBC
Burkina Faso talks agree on plan for return to civilian rule".
Reuters. Retrieved 9 November 2014.
^ Raziye Akkoc (17 September 2015). "
Burkina Faso coup: military says
it now controls country after arresting leaders: live". agencies. The
Burkina Faso Leader Apologizes To Nation For Seizing Power In A
Coup". Retrieved 2015-09-23.
^ "A Week After Coup, Burkina Faso's Interim President Back In Power".
^ "Burkina Faso's Blaise Compaore sacks his government", BBC News,
15 April 2011.
^ "Burkina opposition calls anti-president demo". The Daily Star. 23
April 2011. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
^ Taoko, Hervé; Nossiter, Adam (27 April 2011). "Mayor's Home Burned
Burkina Faso Protests Continue". The New York Times. Archived from
the original on 30 April 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2011.
^ Gongo, Simon (28 April 2011). "
Burkina Faso Riot Police Join Wave of
Protests After Government Dissolved". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 30
Burkina Faso teachers' strike: Union agrees deal". BBC News. 25 May
2011. Archived from the original on 27 May 2011. Retrieved 28 May
Burkina Faso government replaces its governors". Taiwan News. 9
June 2011. Retrieved 11 June 2011.
^ Tiendrebeongo, Aristide (March 2013). "Failure Likely".
^ "Africa's human rights court and the limits of justice".
www.aljazeera.com. Retrieved 2017-10-27.
Burkina Faso 2015 Human Rights Report" (PDF).
^ "A Week After Coup, Burkina Faso's Interim President Back In Power".
National Public Radio. 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2015-09-23.
Burkina Faso Leader Apologizes To Nation For Seizing Power In A
Coup". National Public Radio. 2015-09-22. Retrieved 2015-09-23.
^ Jane's Sentinel Security Assessment – West Africa, 15 April
Burkina Faso capital under curfew after army mutiny". BBC News. 16
April 2011. Retrieved 17 April 2011.
^ a b Das, Dilip K. and Palmiotto, Michael J. (2005) World Police
Encyclopedia, Routledge, ISBN 0-415-94250-0. pp. 139–141
^ U.S. Dept. of State, Burkina Faso: Country Specific Information
^ Foreign and Commonwealth Office,"Sub-Saharan Africa: Burkina Faso".
Archived from the original on 27 August 2009. Retrieved
2009-08-13. . fco.gov.uk
^ a b "SIM Country Profile: Burkina Faso". Archived from the original
on 9 March 2008. Retrieved 5 August 2006.
^ Geography & Wildlife. our-africa.org
^ "OEC: Products exported by
Bulgaria (2012)". The Observatory of
Economic Complexity. Retrieved 30 October 2014. [dead link]
^ "Euromoney Country Risk". Euromoney Country Risk. Euromoney
Institutional Investor PLC. Retrieved 15 August 2011.
Burkina Faso Financial Sector Profile". Archived from the original
on 10 December 2014. Retrieved 2015-06-11. CS1 maint: BOT:
original-url status unknown (link) , MFW4A
^ Profile – Burkina Faso. Inadev.org. Retrieved on 5 April
^ York, Jeoffrey (15 April 2012). "Iamgold's growing investment in
Burkina Faso". The Globe and Mail. Toronto.
^ "OHADA.com: The business law portal in Africa". Retrieved 22 March
^ a b c d e Peter Newborne 2011. Pipes and People: Progress in Water
Supply in Burkina Faso's Cities, London: Overseas Development
Burkina Faso launches
Sahel region's largest solar power plant".
EURACTIV. 2017-11-27. Retrieved 2018-03-06.
^ "Burkina Faso". Retrieved 17 October 2014.
^ European Rail Timetable, Summer 2014 Edition
^ a b c d e UNESCO Science Report: towards 2030 (PDF). UNESCO. 2015.
pp. 472–497. ISBN 978-92-3-100129-1.
^ a b "Burkina Faso", U.S. Department of State, June 2008.
This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the
^ a b Burkina Faso. CIA World Factbook
^ June 2009 the
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State Trafficking in Persons
Africa slavery still widespread". BBC News. 27 October
^ Lewis, M. Paul (ed.), 2009. Ethnologue: Languages of the World,
16th edition. Dallas, Tex.: SIL International. (Page on
"Languages of Burkina Faso.")
^ Comité national du recensement (July 2008). "Recensement général
de la population et de l'habitation de 2006" (PDF). Conseil national
de la statistique. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 April 2011.
Retrieved 20 January 2011.
^ a b Comité national du recensement (July 2008). "Recensement
général de la population et de l'habitation de 2006" (PDF). Conseil
national de la statistique. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21
April 2011. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
^ a b International Religious Freedom Report 2010: Burkina Faso.
United States Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor
(17 November 2010). This article incorporates text from this
source, which is in the public domain.
^ Mapping the Global Muslim Population. Estimate Range of
Country. Pew Forum, 2010
^ Breach of Faith. Human Rights Watch. June 2005. p. 8. Retrieved
4 June 2014. Estimates of around 20 million would be
^ "Statistics in Burkina Faso". World Health Organization.
^ UN AIDS: HIV/AIDS – adult prevalence rate. Retrieved on
25 July 2014.
^ UNAIDS World AIDS Day Report 2011 (PDF), UNAIDS, retrieved 29 March
Female genital mutilation
Female genital mutilation and other harmful practices, WHI.int
^ "Globalis – an interactive world map –
Burkina Faso – Central
government expenditures on health". Globalis.gvu.unu.edu. Archived
from the original on 16 May 2011. Retrieved 1 October 2009.
^ a b "WHO Country Offices in the WHO African Region – WHO
Regional Office for Africa". Afro.who.int. Retrieved 20 June
Burkina Faso DHS Surveys, measuredhs.com
^ "Dengue fever kills 20 in Burkina Faso".
^ "Education – Burkina Faso". Nationsencyclopedia.com. Retrieved 1
^ "UNDP Human Development Report 2007/2008" (PDF). Archived from the
original on 29 April 2011. Retrieved 2016-01-13. CS1 maint: BOT:
original-url status unknown (link) . Palgrave Macmillan. 2007.
^ a b Salhi, Kamal (1999).
Francophone Voices. Intellect Books.
p. 37. ISBN 1-902454-03-0. Retrieved 26 April 2014.
^ Allan, Tuzyline Jita (1997). Women's Studies Quarterly: Teaching
African Literatures in a Global Literary. Feminist Press. p. 86.
ISBN 1-55861-169-X. Retrieved 26 April 2014.
^ Marchais, Julien (2006).
Burkina Faso (in French). Petit Futé.
pp. 91–92. ISBN 2-7469-1601-0. Retrieved 26 April
^ "Oxfam's Cool Planet – Food in Burkina Faso". Oxfam. Archived from
the original on 17 May 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2008.
^  article in French on Burkinabe Zoom-kom
^ Spaas, Lieve (2000) "Burkina Faso," in The
Francophone Film: A
Struggle for Identity, pp. 232–246. Manchester: Manchester
University Press, ISBN 0719058619.
^ Turégano, Teresa Hoefert (2005) African Cinema and Europe: Close-Up
on Burkina Faso, Florence: European Press Academic,
^ "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA.com. Retrieved 4 February
^ Keim, Marion (2014) [1st pub. 2014]. "COUNTRY PROFILE OF SPORT
AND DEVELOPMENT – Sport and Popularity". Sport and Development
Africa – Results of collaborative study of selected
country cases. SUN PRESS. p. 206.
^ "Radiodiffusion-Télévision Burkina". Rtb.bf. Retrieved 1 October
^ Radio Station World, Burkina Faso: Governmental Broadcasting
^ a b Committee to Protect Journalists, Burkina Faso
^ a b Reporters Sans Frontieres, What’s Happening About The Inquiry
Into Norbert Zongo’s Death? Archived 21 April 2014 at the Wayback
^ a b Reporters Sans Frontieres, Outrageous Denial Of Justice
21 July 2006
^ IFEX, Radio Station Temporarily Pulls Programme After Host Receives
Death Threats, 26 April 2007
^ FreeMuse.org, Death threat against Reggae Radio Host Archived 26
April 2014 at the Wayback Machine., 3 May 2007
^ Keita, Mohamed,
Burkina Faso Police Question Zongo Protesters,
Committee to Protect Journalists, 15 December 2008
^ a b c d e f g h i j "
Burkina Faso WFP
United Nations World Food
Programme – Fighting
Hunger Worldwide". wfp.org. Retrieved
^ Pinstrup-Andersen, Per (21 January 2009). "Food security: definition
and measurement" (PDF). Food Security. 1: 5–7.
Burkina Faso ICE Case Study". 1.american.edu. Archived from the
original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
^ a b c "ECHO Factsheet – Burkina Faso" (PDF). European
^ "USAID Office of Food for Peace
Burkina Faso Food Security Country
Framework" (PDF). United States Agency International
^ Burns, Cate (April 2004). "A review of the literature describing the
link between poverty, food insecurity and obesity with specific
reference to Australia" (PDF). VicHealth. Archived from the original
(PDF) on 21 November 2015.
^ Hagberg, Sten (2001). "
Poverty in Burkina Faso" (PDF).
^ Youngblood Coleman, Denise (2015). "
Burkina Faso 2015 Country
Burkina Faso Country Review.
^ Sasson, Albert (2012). "Food security for Africa: an urgent global
challenge" (PDF). Agriculture and Food Security. 1: 2.
^ Headey, Derek & Shenggen Fan. "Reflections on the global food
crisis: How did it happen? How has it hurt? And how can we prevent the
next one? Vol. 165. Intl Food Policy Res Inst, 2010" (PDF).
^ a b West, Colin Thor (2014). "Famines are a Thing of the Past: Food
Security Trends in Northern Burkina Faso". Human Organization. 73 (4):
^ Reardon, Thomas (1996). "Agroclimatic Shock, Income Inequality, and
Poverty: Evidence from Burkina Faso" (PDF). World Development. 24 (5):
^ Ostergaard Nielsen, Jonas (February 2010). "Cultural barriers to
climate change adaptation: A case study from Northern Burkina Faso".
Global Environmental Change. 20: 142–152.
^ Barbier; et al. (2009). "Human Vulnerability to Climate Variability
in the Sahel: Farmers' Adaptation Strategies in Northern Burkina
Faso". Environmental Management. 43 (5): 790–803.
PMID 19037691. Retrieved November 24, 2016.
^ Groten, S. M. E. (1993). "NDVI—crop monitoring and early yield
assessment of Burkina Faso". International Journal of Remote Sensing.
14 (8): 1495–1515. Bibcode:1993IJRS...14.1495G.
^ a b "Coping with household-level food insecurity in drought-affected
areas of Burkina Faso" (PDF). ac.els-cdn.com.
doi:10.1016/0305-750X(88)90109-X. Retrieved 2015-11-02.
^ Roncoli, Ingram, and Kirshen (2001). "The costs and risks of coping
with drought: livelihood impacts and farmers' responses in Burkina
Faso" (PDF). Climate Research. 19: 119–132.
Bibcode:2001ClRes..19..119R. doi:10.3354/cr019119. CS1 maint:
Uses authors parameter (link)
Hunger Index IFPRI". ifpri.org. Retrieved
^ a b c d "UN World Food Program". wfp.org. Retrieved
^ a b "The Cost of
Hunger in Africa:
Burkina Faso 2015" (PDF). African
^ "Statistics". UNICEF. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
^ "Education of Marginalized Populations in Burkina Faso".
^ a b "The DHS Program – Burkina Faso: DHS, 2010 – Final Report
(French)". dhsprogram.com. Retrieved 2015-10-19.
^ "Gains and losses as
Burkina Faso fights child hunger". IRINnews.
^ a b "
Burkina Faso Brief" (PDF). World Food Programme.
^ "What We Do". worldbank.org. Retrieved 2015-11-02.
^ a b c d e f g "Projects :
Agricultural Productivity and Food
Security Project The World Bank". worldbank.org. Retrieved
Rupley, Lawrence; Bangali, Lamissa & Diamitani, Boureima (2013).
Historical Dictionary of Burkina Faso. The Scarecrow Press.
Engberg-Perderson, Lars, Endangering Development: Politics, Projects,
and Environment in
Burkina Faso (Praeger Publishers, 2003).
Englebert, Pierre, Burkina Faso: Unsteady Statehood in West Africa
Howorth, Chris, Rebuilding the Local Landscape: Environmental
Burkina Faso (Ashgate, 1999).
McFarland, Daniel Miles and Rupley, Lawrence A, Historical Dictionary
Burkina Faso (Scarecrow Press, 1998).
Manson, Katrina and Knight, James,
Burkina Faso (Bradt Travel Guides,
Roy, Christopher D and Wheelock, Thomas G B, Land of the Flying Masks:
Art and Culture in Burkina Faso: The Thomas G.B. Wheelock Collection
(Prestel Publishing, 2007).
Thomas Sankara Speaks: The
Burkina Faso Revolution
1983–1987 (Pathfinder Press, 2007).
Sankara, Thomas, We are the Heirs of the World's Revolutions: Speeches
Burkina Faso Revolution 1983–1987 (Pathfinder Press, 2007).
Find more aboutBurkina Fasoat's sister projects
Definitions from Wiktionary
Media from Wikimedia Commons
News from Wikinews
Quotations from Wikiquote
Texts from Wikisource
Textbooks from Wikibooks
Travel guide from Wikivoyage
Learning resources from Wikiversity
Premier Ministère, official government portal. (in French)
"Burkina Faso". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency.
LeFaso.net, a news information site.
Burkina Faso from UCB Libraries GovPubs.
Burkina Faso at Curlie (based on DMOZ)
Burkina Faso profile from the BBC News.
Wikimedia Atlas of Burkina Faso
News headline links from AllAfrica.com.
Overseas Development Institute
Country profile at New Internationalist.
Key Development Forecasts for
Burkina Faso from International Futures.
World Bank 2011 Trade Summary for Burkiana Faso
Burkina Faso articles
French Upper Volta
Republic of Upper Volta
Agacher Strip War
West African CFA franc
West African CFA franc (currency)
Countries and territories of Africa
Central African Republic
Republic of the Congo
Republic of the Congo
Ivory Coast (Côte d'Ivoire)
São Tomé and Príncipe
Plazas de soberanía
Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
Southern Provinces (Western Sahara)1
States with limited
Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic
1 Unclear sovereignty.
African Union (AU)
Organisation of African Unity
Permanent Representatives' Committee
Specialized Technical Committees
African Court of Justice
African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights
Peace and Security
Infrastructure and Energy
Social Affairs and Health
HR, Sciences and Technology
Trade and Industry
Rural Economy and Agriculture
Women and Gender
African Central Bank
African Monetary Fund
African Investment Bank
Peace and Security Council
African Standby Force
Panel of the Wise
African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights
African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights
African Economic Community
African Free Trade Zone
Tripartite Free Trade Area
United States of Africa
United States of Latin Africa
Community of Sahel-Saharan States
Central African Republic
Central African Republic
Republic of the Congo
Republic of the Congo
St. Pierre and Miquelon
São Tomé and Príncipe
Bosnia and Herzegovina
United Arab Emirates
1 Associate member.
2 Provisionally referred to by the Francophonie as the "former
Republic of Macedonia"; see Macedonia naming dispute.
Agence de Coopération Culturelle et Technique
Agence universitaire de la Francophonie
UN French Language Day
International Francophonie Day
Jeux de la Francophonie
Prix des cinq continents de la francophonie
Organisation of Islamic Cooperation
Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC)
United Arab Emirates
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Central African Republic
Moro National Liberation Front
Economic Cooperation Organization
1 As the "Turkish Cypriot State".
BNF: cb11934219d (data)