OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso, Oct. 30 (UPI) -- Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore declared a state of emergency Thursday and dissolved the government amid unrest in reaction to a proposed constitutional amendment that would have extended his presidential term limit.
Earlier on Thursday, protesters stormed the Parliament in Ouagadougou, where the contentious legislation was to be debated. Protesters set the Parliament on fire along with the city hall and headquarters of the ruling political party. The proposed amendment to the Constitution would allow the president, who seized power in 1987 and has since won four disputed elections over a 27-year rule, to run for president again.
Compaore announced that he would withdraw the contentious legislation from consideration, although it was unclear whether the concession would be sufficient to quell the unrest.
"We are calling on the people to show that they are against it. The resignation of President Blaise Compaore is the only thing that can bring peace to the country," opposition leader Zephirin Diabre told a local radio station.
The White House National Security Council weighed in on the situation, calling for a "return to a peaceful process... that will build on Burkina Faso's hard-won democratic gains."