Moroccan photographer injured in Burkina Faso hotel attack dies

Moroccan photographer injured in Burkina Faso hotel attack dies
Acclaimed French-Moroccan photographer Leila Alaoui has died after sustaining several gunshot wounds during Friday's terrorist attack on a hotel in Burkina Faso.
2 min read
19 January, 2016
Alaoui was a French-Moroccan dual citizen [Leila Alaoui]
A French-Moroccan photographer, who was injured during a terrorist attack on a hotel in Burkina Faso, has succumbed to her injuries, The New Arab's Arabic service has reported.

Leila Alaoui passed away on Monday just hours before she was meant to be airlifted to France for emergency medical treatment for multiple gunshot wounds.

The photographer was on assignment in Burkina Faso's capital Ouagadougou when armed militants stormed a hotel and a nearby cafe on Friday night, killing at least 30 people and taking 126 people as hostages, who were later freed by security forces.

"Leila suffered several heart attacks on Monday evening, which prevented her transfer to France. She was declared dead at 9.30 local time," said a Moroccan diplomat in Burkina Faso.

The 33-year-old was an acclaimed photographer and video artist.

Burkinabe authorities have given differing tolls for the number of foreigners killed in the attack - either 14 or 15 depending on the source.

Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb [AQIM] has named the three gunmen who carried out the attack on the hotel.

AQIM said the hotel attacked on Friday night, the four-star Splendid Hotel, was "one of the most dangerous dens of global espionage in the west of the African continent".

The terrorist organisation also published photos of the three young men dressed in military fatigues and wielding weapons.

Benin's president Thomas Boni Yayi said on Monday that West African nations will "fight back" against terrorism.

"It's not merely Burkina that was hit, it's the entire sub-region, and we're not going to just sit on our hands. We will react and respond," said Boni Yayi as he flew into the capital Ouagadougou to show regional solidarity with the country.

"The question now is whose turn is it next," he added.

Friday's attack came weeks after an attack on a luxury Mali hotel in Bamako claimed by Islamists that left 20 people dead.