Suspected jihadist attacks in Burkina Faso have killed dozens of soldiers and civilians in a week, security and local sources told AFP on Sunday.

They said at least four attacks have targeted military contingents since last Sunday, leaving "dozens dead" mostly in the restive north of the country.

One local source said "a large group of heavily armed terrorists attacked the military base at Nouna" in the north west on Saturday, with the clash leaving "several victims," both military and civilian.

A security source contacted by AFP confirmed an attack which was repelled and added that "another almost simultaneous attack targeted another northern detachment" but was likewise beaten back.

The sources said two other attacks on military bases took place on December 24.

"A large-scale attack targeted the Solle detachment. Several casualties were recorded... but the bravery and response (of troops) made it possible to repel the attackers," a security source told AFP, adding the jihadists were targeted by air strikes as they retreated.

That attack has been claimed by the GSIM jihadist alliance linked to Al-Qaeda. The group claimed it killed around 60 soldiers.

Also on December 24, according to a security source, a gendarmerie base was hit at Gorgadji in the northern Sahel region by a sizeable group of fighters who arrived on motorcycles.

The military government which took power in Burkina Faso following a September 2022 coup rarely comments on tolls from suspected jihadist attacks.

However, state television reported "more than 30 terrorists were killed," adding the army destroyed three jihadist bases discovered in the northwest.

Burkina has been caught since 2015 in a spiral of jihadist violence perpetrated by groups affiliated with the Islamic State group and Al-Qaeda, which were already hitting neighbouring Mali and Niger.