Coup attempt appears under way in Burkina Faso

(BBC) A coup attempt appears to be underway in Burkina Faso.

Gunshots have been heard near the presidential palace and access to major buildings, including the national assembly, the national broadcaster and the residence of the prime minister have been blocked by military vehicles.

It was only in January that the current head of state, Lt Col Paul-Henri Damiba, ousted President Roch Kaboré through a coup.

The democratically elected president was deposed for failing to contain violence by Islamist militants. Now Lt Col Damiba seems to be suffering a similar fate.

On Thursday hundreds of protesters took to the streets of the western city of Bobo Dioulasso to demand his resignation, blaming him for the ongoing insecurity in the country.

Eyewitnesses are reporting a heavy military presence around the city.

Schools are closed and residents are staying indoors, waiting for updates on the latest news.

Since 2015, authorities in Burkina Faso have been struggling to contain attacks by insurgent groups.

On Monday, 11 soldiers were killed in a militant attack in the northern Soum province, 50 civilians were reported missing.

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