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Canada suspends Burkina aid after army grabs power

Canada suspended development assistance to Burkina Faso on Tuesday after the West African country’s military seized power in one of the world’s poorest nations. “Given the current climate, it is not possible to provide development assistance dollars directly to the government of Burkina Faso and ensure they are spent effectively and as intended,” International Development Minister Christian Paradis said in a statement. Canada provided Can$40.76 million (US$35.6 million) in aid between 2012 and 2013, according to the latest available government figures, for agriculture, entrepreneurship, women’s rights, technical training and health. Burkina Faso’s military had stepped into a power vacuum left by president Blaise Compaore, who was forced to resign in the wake of violent street demonstrations over his 27-year-rule.

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