As an update to the incident that took place on Tuesday, February 8th, investigations have revealed that the attack was extremely complex, involving improvised explosive devices (IED’s), and resulted in further casualties when a backup team in four vehicles arrived on site later that same evening. In addition, on Thursday, February 10th, a military commando team hit yet another IED resulting in one more fatality.
These attacks on the 8th and the 10th have resulted in the total death of four African Parks Beninese rangers and two African Parks drivers (whose names will be released once all next of kin have been notified), our African Parks Chief Law Enforcement Instructor, and one Beninese soldier, along with the hospitalisation of twelve wounded individuals.
The President of Benin convened an ‘Extraordinary Council of Ministers’ late yesterday, Thursday February 10th, confirming the Government’s assurance to focus on security throughout the country and to accelerate its ongoing strategic response to what are being identified as terrorist attacks.
African Parks staff have adjusted activities accordingly in both W and Pendjari National Parks to adapt to the increased safety risk; and there have been no tourists in the parks since January.
We will continue to work closely with the Government of Benin and the Beninese Armed Forces to manage the outcomes and stabilise the situation.
We send our most sincere condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives, and will continue to provide updates when they become available.