The drama saw Burkinabe troops, backed by French special forces, battle militants who stormed the four-star Splendid Hotel, which is popular with foreigners and United Nations staff.

At least 13 foreigners are among the dead, according to a government toll.

Burkina Faso has declared three days of national mourning following the onslaught, which echoed another Al-Qaeda attack last year on a luxury hotel in neighbouring Mali where 20 people were killed, mostly foreigners.

Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) claimed the latest attack on behalf of an affiliate, saying the gunmen were from the Al-Murabitoun group of notorious one-eyed Algerian extremist Mokhtar Belmokhtar.

It is still not clear how many attackers took part in the onslaught - the bodies of three have been identified, but some witnesses reported seeing more.

Burkina Faso's Interior Minister Simon Compaore said search security forces were carrying out careful searches, while at the scene of the attack a security cordon was widened yesterday.

Among those killed were six Canadians, two French nationals, two Swiss, an American, a Portuguese and a Dutch person, according to the prosecutor's office.

Read more: 23 Killed, 33 injured in Al-Qaeda attack on Burkina hotel

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