Ibrahim Traore becomes interim president and warns in a speech the West African country is "confronted with a security and humanitarian crisis without precedent."

"Burkina's existence is in danger," says interim leader and military chief Ibrahim Traore. (AFP Archive)

Ibrahim Traore, the young army captain who led the latest coup in Burkina Faso, has become interim president, vowing to win back territory from militants.

Traore pledged support for a transition leading to elections in July 2024 as he took the oath of office in the capital Ouagadougou under tight security on Friday.

Traore, 34, led disgruntled junior officers last month in the second coup in eight months to hit the west African country.

Junta members had already announced that he would take over the role of transitional president, but Friday was the official investiture.

After taking the oath of office, Traore, dressed in military fatigues and a scarf with the country's national colours, said: "We are confronted with a security and humanitarian crisis without precedent.

"Our aims are none other than the reconquest of territory occupied by these hordes of terrorists," he added. "Burkina's existence is in danger."

The swearing in was outlined in the transition charter adopted last week.

The charter's article four stipulates "that the term of the transition president ends with the investiture of the president resulting from the presidential election" planned for July 2024.

READ MORE: Soldiers, civilian auxiliaries killed in Burkina Faso 'militant ambush'

Traore vows to defend constitution

"I swear on my honour before the Burkina people that I will preserve, respect, ensure respect for and defend the constitution, the transition charter and (Burkina's) laws," Traore said, reading his oath of office.

Last month Traore toppled Lieutenant-Colonel Paul-Henri Sandaogo Damiba.

Damiba himself had seized power only in January, forcing out Burkina's last elected president, Roch Marc Christian Kabore.

The motive for both coups was anger at failures to stem a seven-year militant insurgency that has claimed thousands of lives and driven nearly two million people from their homes.

Fresh evidence of that threat emerged on Friday when the army's command said it had killed 15 militants, including the leader of a group active in the southwest of the country, and freed a hostage earlier in the week.

Foreign dignitaries were absent from the inauguration, which took place in a well-guarded room of the constitutional council in Ouagadougou.

Traore's takeover comes during a struggle for influence between France and Russia in French-speaking Africa, where former French colonies are increasingly turning to Moscow.

READ MORE: Two coups in a year in Burkina Faso: what you need to know

Source: AFP