During his recent visit to the United States, we had the opportunity to speak with President Blaise Compaoré about his role in conflict mediation in Mali and also about his thoughts on economic development in Burkina Faso.

Blaise Compaoré (born February 3, 1951) is a Burkinabé politician who has been the President of Burkina Faso since 1987. He was a top associate of President Thomas Sankara during the 1980s, and in October 1987 he led a coup d'état that murdered Sankara; subsequently he introduced a policy of "rectification", overturning the Marxist policies pursued by Sankara. He won elections in 1991, 1998, 2005, and 2010.