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    Anti-government protesters gather in the Place de la Nation in Ouagadougou, capital of Burkina Faso

    Burkina Faso Head Refuses to Hand Over Power to Civilian Gov't in Two Weeks

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    Lieutenant Colonel Isaac Zida who is currently leading Burkina Faso hopes to maintain stability and peace in the country.

    MOSCOW, November 7 (RIA Novosti) — Burkina Faso's military leader who assumed power as head of state last week has reneged on the requirement of the African Union to hand over power to a civilian government within two weeks saying that stability was his main priority.

    The Presidents of Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal arrived at Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso's capital on Wednesday, to discuss the crisis in the country. As a result, the African Union demanded that Isaac Zida hand over power to a civilian leader within two weeks who would head the country during a one-year transition period until elections in November 2015. If the requirement is not met, sanctions may be imposed.

    "The deadline that has been imposed on us… is not really a concern for us," Lieutenant Colonel Isaac Zida said Thursday, as reported by South Africa's Premier Online News Source. "We are not afraid of sanctions, we care much more about stability and peace for the people," he continued.

    "What is important is to be able to come to a consensus to get through the year without any problems and to hold elections which would be recognized by everyone," he added.

    On Thursday the UN Security Council also called for a civilian-led transition and speedy elections in Burkina Faso.

    On November 1, Lieutenant Colonel Isaac Zida, the second in command of Burkina Faso's presidential guard, assumed power as the head of state, following violent protests over the country's President Blaise Compaore's attempt to extend his 27-year rule.

    The protests that saw 30 dead and 100 injured began on October 30, when lawmakers prepared to amend the constitution to allow 63-year-old Compaore to contest the November 2015 elections. The protesters set the parliament building in the capital Ouagadougou on fire.

    On October 31, Compaore resigned and called for the presidential elections to be held within 90 days.

    The European Union has called on the military to respect human rights, and the United States has condemned the military imposing its will on the people of Burkina Faso.


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