Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Child Migrants In America: What to do about the wave of unaccompanied minors? (Part Two)

Read more

DEBATE

Child Migrants In America: What to do about the wave of unaccompanied minors?

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Abbas Araghchi, Iranian deputy foreign minister

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

FOCUS

When water becomes a weapon of war

Read more

ENCORE!

Eve Ensler: 'In The Body Of The World'

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Ed Husain, Author of 'The Islamist'

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan Protests: Democracy put to the test

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan Protests: Democracy put to the test (part 2)

Read more

  • IS video purports to show beheading of second US journalist

    Read more

  • Could France sell the Mona Lisa to pay off its debts?

    Read more

  • Video: Bodies ‘left behind’ as Ukraine forces flee rebel assault

    Read more

  • Trust and 'bio-disaster units' needed to fight Ebola

    Read more

  • France vows crackdown on unemployment benefit ‘abusers’

    Read more

  • Julie Gayet wins privacy case against French glossy Closer

    Read more

  • Germany blocks popular car pick-up service Uber

    Read more

  • Several UN peacekeepers killed in Mali explosion

    Read more

  • NATO plans new 'spearhead' force to counter Russia

    Read more

  • French clubs left behind as others spend big

    Read more

  • Britain drops arrest warrant for ill boy’s parents

    Read more

  • When water becomes a weapon of war

    Read more

  • Arab media strike back at IS Islamists – with cartoons

    Read more

  • US military targets Somalia's al Shabaab Islamist group

    Read more

  • Eve Ensler: 'In The Body Of The World'

    Read more

  • Boko Haram Islamists seize northeast Nigerian town

    Read more

  • Is Carla Bruni against a political comeback for Sarkozy?

    Read more

  • Monaco’s Falcao leaves Ligue 1 for Man Utd

    Read more

Africa

Mali junta denounces 'grave rights violations' in north

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-04-04

Mali's ruling junta on Wednesday accused Tuareg rebels occupying the northern city of Gao of grave human rights abuses, in particular the kidnap and rape of women and girls. The rebels have established sharia law in the north.

AFP - Mali's junta on Wednesday accused rebels controlling the northern city of Gao of grave human rights abuses, in particluar the kidnap and rape of women and girls.

"The populations of northern Mali, specifically those in Gao, are suffering grave human rights violations" since the town was seized Saturday by Tuareg rebels and Islamists, the junta said in a statement.

MALI

Spokesman Amadou Konare pointed the finger at the Tuareg rebel Azawad National Liberation Movement, the Islamist Ansar Dine and Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).

"Women and girls have been kidnapped and raped by the new occupants who are laying down their own law," the statement said, without giving further details.

A Gao resident, who asked not to be identified by name or employment, confirmed the junta's accusations.

"It is a reality here. At night they kidnap women, take them away and rape them," he said, adding there had been at least a dozen cases since Saturday.

Over the weekend the Tuareg and Islamists seized the three main northern centres of Kidal, Gao and the fabled city of Timbuktu, the former seeking regional independence and the latter sharia, Islamic law.

The resident of Gao said "every kind of robbery imaginable has happened here since those people arrived: people have been fleeced, pillaged, vandalised. There is no transport and those who try to leave the city are turned back."

France's foreign minister on Mali

French Foreign Minister Alain Juppé says that France will urge the United Nations to emphasise the need "for the international community to mobilise against the Islamist danger facing Mali” in an statement currently being drawn up on the crisis there. (AFP)

A band of low-ranking officers ousted the government on March 22 for its alleged incompetence in stamping out the northern rebellion, but have since lost territory larger than France to the various rebel groups.

In its statement the junta also denounced "a restriction of freedom to come and go in Kidal (north-east of Gao) and Gao."

It called the rights violations a "crime against humanity" and urged international efforts to "condemn these crimes and their perpetrators."

Date created : 2012-04-04

  • MALI

    Tuaregs encircle Timbuktu as junta restores constitution

    Read more

  • MALI

    Mali junta ousted as Tuaregs pursue northern offensive

    Read more

  • MALI

    Mali junta appeals for foreign help to fight rebels

    Read more

COMMENT(S)