According to the army, at least 12 troops and four paramilitary fighters were killed and 21 others were wounded in an attack on an army facility in Burkina Faso’s insurgent-infested centre-north on Friday.
The incident took occurred early in the morning at the Namissiguima military post in Burkina Faso’s Sanmatenga province.
The fatality toll was provisional, and reinforcements were dispatched to secure the area, according to the statement, which did not go into detail about the attackers.
Over the last decade, Burkina Faso has been fighting a jihadist insurgency that has extended from neighbouring Mali, with militants linked to al Qaeda and Islamic State launching murderous attacks and gaining ground in both Burkina Faso and Niger.
Despite the presence of foreign forces and UN peacekeeping missions, the violence has killed thousands of people and forced more than 2 million people to flee their homes in the Sahel region.
Protests in Burkina Faso erupted in January as a result of citizens’ dissatisfaction with the government’s inability to protect them.
It was the fourth coup in 18 months in West Africa, following two in Mali and one in Guinea.
In 2012, Islamists grabbed control of Mali’s desert north, leading France, a former colonial power, to intervene the following year in an attempt to push them back.