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Burkina faso is a landlocked country in West Africa, north of Ghana, Togo, and Côte D'Ivoire, formerly known as Haute Volta (Upper Volta). Despite its relative international obscurity, it is known for three things: its people, particularly its rural population's struggle against poverty in a sometimes harsh and unyielding physical milieu; a legacy of recent political populism; and the presence of extensive and sometimes innovative international development assistance. Most of the country lies in the Sahelian and Sudano-Sahelian climatic zone. It is wetter and thus more productive in the south than the north, where rainfed cropping gives way to herding. A unimodal rainfall pattern allows the cultivation of dryland crops, particularly millet and sorghum, on ferruginous and sandy soils in summer. Sugar and cotton ...

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