Picture: Forêt Classée du Kou, near Bobo-Dioulasso in Burkina Faso (2002). Marco Schmidt. CC A-SA 2.5 Generic.
(Original picture clipped and captioned by SFM)
We have added extensive new data on the organizational structure and command personnel of the security and defence forces of Burkina Faso, Chad and Niger to WhoWasInCommand.com.
With this update WhoWasInCommand.com now covers all the states of the G5 Sahel along with the Force conjointe transfrontalière du G5 Sahel, a joint transnational counter-terror operation launched in July 2017. Below, we give an overview of what’s in this data update.
Data update by record type
Data update by force branch and date coverage
|Country||Force branch||Coverage until|
|Burkina Faso||Army, Air Force, Gendarmerie, Police||23 April 2020|
|Chad||Army, Gendarmerie, Police||15 June 2020|
|Niger||Army, Air Force, Gendarmerie||17 February 2020|
We constructed the data added to WhoWasInCommand.com in this update during the course of 2020 as part of a close examination of the composition of the Force conjointe transfrontalière du G5 Sahel.
Since completing that round of research two of the states we’re providing data about in this update have experienced coups d’état; one of them successful. Elements of the military in Niger attempted a coup on 31 March 2021 but were unsuccessful. The government of Burkina Faso, however, was overthrown by army officers led by Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba on 23 January 2022.
Any changes in the composition, organization and leadership of the security and defence forces that have happened as a result of those events are not reflected in this update.
How are these data put together?
The data on WhoWasInCommand.com are the outcome of Security Force Monitor’s research into security and defence forces implicated in human rights abuses. All the data are drawn from publicly available, mostly digital, sources. These include data and material we have taken from official government websites, media reportage, research done by human rights organizations and institutions at every level.
The information gained from this research is then modelled as data that can show the organizational structure, geographical footprint (infrastrcture and areas of operation) and command personnel of the forces over time. Every single data point is linked to the specific sources used to evidence it, meaning you can check our work (and build on it). At present, the data on WhoWasInCommand.com are based on our analysis of over 14,000 sources.
We’ve written a lot more about our research method and approach to data in the Security Force Monitor Research Handbook.