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At least 60 people killed in blast at gold mine in Burkina Faso, state TV reports

In Burkina Faso, roughly 60 people have been killed and dozens more wounded after an explosion at an informal gold mining site occurred. State television outlets reported on the tragedy, stating that the cause of the explosion remains unknown. The blast occurred in the Poni province. Images from the scene show a large blast site of trees and destroyed houses, as well as the bodies of those killed in the incident. Burkina Faso has some major gold mines in its territory, some of which are run by international companies.

In addition, the country has smaller, informal sites that are often operated without oversight or regulation. These sites frequently use children as laborers, and accidents are common. Burkina Faso is currently facing attacks from Islamist groups linked to al Qaeda and the Islamic State, who seek control of the mining sites to fund their endeavors. In Solhan, an estimated 200 people were killed in attacks perpetrated by a local militia in search of gold in June of last year. A CNN investigation found that some of the killings were conducted by children as young as 12 years old. Monday’s blast shows no sign that Islamist militants were involved.

Read More: At least 60 people killed in blast at gold mine in Burkina Faso, state TV reports

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