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Burkina Faso History Timeline

Burkina Faso's Information

Flag of Burkina Faso
Land Area 273,800 km2
Water Area 400 km2
Total Area 274,200km2 (#74)
Population 19,512,533 (#59)
Population Density 71.27/km2
Government Type Presidential Republic
GDP (PPP) $32.99 Billion
GDP Per Capita $1,800
Currency Franc (XOF)
More Information Burkina Faso
Largest Cities

1000 - 1400

  • (1000s) Mossi Kingdom became dominant
  • (1300s) Islam was introduced
  • (1450s) Capital built at Ouagudougou by Mossi Kingdom
1700 - 1800
  • (1710 - 1895) Muslim rulers led Kong Empire, included Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast
  • (1895) Mossi kingdom of Ouagadougou defeated by French colonial forces
  • (1896) Burkina Faso became French protectorate
  • (1904) Territories of the Volta Basin became part of French West African colonial empire
  • (1915 - 1916) In Volta-Bani War, indigenous African army fought French Army; French Army defeated insurgents, executed leaders
  • (1919) Upper Volta became separate constituent territory of French West Africa
  • (1919) Colonial government separated present territory of Burkina Faso from Upper Senegal and Niger, named it Haute Volta; Francois Charles Alexis Edouard Hesling became first governor
  • (1932) Colony was dismantled, divided between Cote d'Ivoire, French Sudan, Niger
  • (1947) Colony was revived with its original boundaries, as part of French Union
  • (1958) Upper Volta granted internal self-government, became Republic of Upper Volta
  • (1960) Upper Volta gained independence from France; Maurice Yameogo became first president
  • (1965) Maurice Yameogo elected to second term
  • (1966) Mass demonstrations and strikes by students, labor unions, and civil servants were held, military was forced to intervene
  • (1966) Military deposed President Yameogo, suspended constitution, dissolved National Assembly, placed Lt. Col Sangoule Lamizana as head of government of senior army officers
  • (1968) Major drought severely impacted economy, agriculture, livestock and human population
  • (1970) New constitution in national referendum established four-year transition period toward civilian rule, allowed Lamizana to remain as head of government until a president was elected
  • (1970) Gerard Ouedraogo appointed prime minister
  • (1974) President Lamizana ousted Prime Minister Ouedraogo, dissolved Parliament, returned power to military government
  • (1975) Economic Community of West African States formed, Burkina Faso one of 15 members
  • (1977) New constitution written and approved, called for multi-party democracy, allowed Lamizana to remain in office
  • (1978) Lamizana reelected as president in open election
  • (1980) Lamizana ousted in military coup led by Saye Zerbo, eradicated 1977 constitution
  • (1982) Following industrial unrest, Saye Zerbo ousted in military coup led by Jean-Baptiste Ouedraogo
  • (1983) Thomas Sankara appointed prime minister
  • (1983) In internal political struggle, Thomas Sankara took power from Ouedraogo, formed National Council for the Revolution, established himself as president
  • (1984) Upper Volta renamed Burkina Faso
  • (1987) Thomas Sankara assassinated in military coup led by Captain Blaise Compaore who took over power
  • (1990) Blaise Compaore introduced democratic and constitutional reforms
  • (1991) Compaore elected president without opposition
  • (1992) Popular Democracy-Labour Movement won majority of seats in first multi-party parliamentary elections since 1978
  • (1996) 4,000 died in meningitis outbreak
  • (1997) Burkina Faso suffered severe drought
  • (1998) Campaore reelected president by a landslide
  • (1998) David Ouedraogo, chauffeur for President Campaore's brother, Francois, died from torture injuries caused by two of the President's bodyguards
  • (1998) Publisher and editor of l'Independant, Norbert Zongo, was assassinated
  • (1999) Inquiry into death of Zongo concluded he was killed for political reasons
  • (1999) General strike held over economic grievances and human rights violations
  • (1999) Mining company Soremib announced closure of country's largest gold mine
  • (2000) Two of President Campaore's bodyguards were convicted and sentenced to 20 years in prison for murder of David Ouedraogo
  • (2000) Constitution was amended to allow president to serve two terms
  • (2000) U.S. and British diplomats accused President Compaore and President Taylor of Liberia of trading arms for diamonds, aiding rebels in Sierra Leone
  • (2000) Government agreed to allow UN-run organization to monitor weapons imports
  • (2001) Meningitis outbreak killed 3,500
  • (2001) Thousands fled to Burkina Faso from Ivory Coast to escape attacks on foreigners
  • (2001) As part of Burkina Faso's first "National Pardon Day", President Compaore asked for forgiveness for abuses that occurred during his 13-year rule
  • (2002) W135 strain of meningitis from Middle East identified in Burkina Faso; 12,000 infected, 1,500 died
  • (2002) President Compaore increased power, threw out all nine opposition ministers from Cabinet, cut number of posts from 36 to 31

Burkina Faso Trivia

What is the Culture of Burkina Faso Like?

Burkina Faso has great ethnic diversity. The Mossi is the largest ethnic community living in the country, comprising of 52% of the population. The ethnic minorities with a significant presence in the country are the Fulani (8.4%), Gurma (7%), Bobo (4.9%), Gurunsi (4.6%), and Senufo (4.5%). The legacy of the French colonial rule in Burkina Faso is visible in the country. For one thing, the official language in Burkina Faso is French. Different ethnic groups also speak their own indigenous languages. Muslims represent 61.5% of the population of Burkina Faso. Christians, both Catholics and Protestants, are also present in significant numbers. A large section of the population adheres to the traditional indigenous religions.

The Culture Of Burkina Faso

What Languages are Spoken in Burkina Faso?

French is Burkina Faso’s official language. Mossi is the most widely spoken language of Burkina Faso, as it is spoken by nearly 40% of the country’s population. Most people living in the country’s urban areas are multilingual, while the rural population uses their native languages for common activities.

What Languages Are Spoken in Burkina Faso?

Which Is The Largest Ethnic Group In Burkina Faso?

The Mossi is the largest ethnic group in Burkina Faso and accounts for 50.2% of the country’s population. The Fulani, Bobo, Gurma, and Mandé are some of the ethnic minorities of the country.

Largest Ethnic Groups In Burkina Faso

What is the Capital of Burkina Faso?

The capital city of Burkina Faso is Ouagadougou.

What is the Capital of Burkina Faso?

What Is The Dominant Religious Belief In Burkina Faso?

Islam is the religion of the majority in Burkina Faso. 61.1% of the country’s population adhere to this religion. 19.0% of the population practice Roman Catholicism. 11.3% practice indigenous African beliefs. Protestant Christianity is the religion of 5.5% of the population.

Religious Beliefs In Burkina Faso

What is the tallest mountain in Burkina Faso?

Mount Tena Kourou is the highest mountain in Burkina Faso standing at the height of 2,457 feet above sea level.

Tallest Mountains In Burkina Faso

About the Author

John Moen is a cartographer who along with his wife are the orignal founders of worldatlas.com. He and his wife, Chris Woolwine-Moen, produced thousands of award-winning maps that are used all over the world and content that aids students, teachers, travelers and parents with their geography and map questions. Today, it's one of the most popular educational sites on the web.

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