Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

IN THE PAPERS

'I got the power': Womanspreading takes hold of social media (and maybe 2018)

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

What a story! France investigating Russian billionaire senator over tax fraud

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

US retailers gear up for post-Thanksgiving splurge

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Stars join campaign to #FreeCyntoiaBrown

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Mnangagwa to be sworn in as Zimbabwe's president on Friday

Read more

THE DEBATE

Hard bargaining: Lebanon prime minister returns and suspends resignation

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Keepers of the flame: Native American communities seeking to protect their cultural legacy

Read more

FOCUS

Tunisians disillusioned, seven years after revolution

Read more

ACCESS ASIA

Indonesia: New orangutan species found in Sumatra

Read more

Africa

UN peacekeeper, two civilians killed in attack on military convoy in Mali

© Sébastien Rieussec, AFP | UN peacekeepers stand guard near the airport on February 4, 2016 in Timbuktu, central Mali

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2016-11-07

A peacekeeper from Togo and two Malian civilians were killed Sunday in an attack on a military convoy in Mali, rounding off a bloody week for foreign forces stationed there, a UN statement said.

More than 11,000 UN police and military are currently serving in Mali, attempting to guarantee security in lawless swathes of the vast Sahel nation.

Seven other peacekeepers, also from Togo, were wounded in the attack in the central Mopti region, according to the statement by the UN mission, known by the acronym MINUSMA.

After a mine or improvised explosive device was detonated, attackers opened fire on the convoy, the UN said, without identifying the assailants.

The attack came the day after a soldier serving with France's "Barkhane" counter-terror force was killed in a similar incident.

He died of his injuries following a mine blast near the northern town of Kidal in an attack claimed by the Islamist group Ansar Dine, which has ties to Al-Qaeda.

A MINUSMA spokesman said Malian police would investigate the death of the two civilians following the convoy.

Also on Sunday, Ansar Dine claimed the ransacking of an army base in the restive north during which they stole weapons and vehicles as troops fled their positions.

The claim of responsibility was issued by Mauritanian news agency al-Akhbar, which regularly carries statements from jihadist groups operating in the Sahel.

The jihadists said they had killed "several" Malian soldiers but this was denied by independent sources and military officials contacted by AFP.

Deadliest mission

More than 30 MINUSMA troops have been killed this year, more than in any other UN peacekeeping mission.

It has been plagued by logistical failings and the UN has admitted instances of torture and sexual abuse by staff, as well as one instance of causing the death of a detainee.

The Mopti attack took place as Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan held talks with top officials in Bamako ahead of the deployment of 600 Canadian peacekeepers to Africa, and possibly to Mali.

Sajjan said Canada wanted to "take our time" before deciding which nation to support, but added Canada was "not adverse to risk".

The United Nations has expressed interest in having Canadian tactical helicopters deployed in the region once Dutch aircraft leave in January.

MINUSMA deployed in Mali in 2013, following a French counter-terrorism force that landed in January to drive jihadists from key northern cities they had overrun.

Northern Mali had fallen into the hands of jihadists linked to Al-Qaeda in early 2012 – briefly backed by Tuareg-led rebels – throwing the country into chaos.

Although the jihadists were routed, large swathes of Mali remain outside the control of domestic and foreign troops.

(AFP)

Date created : 2016-11-07

  • MALI

    French soldier succumbs to injuries in mine explosion in Mali

    Read more

  • NIGER

    Niger says US aid worker likely kidnapped by Mali jihadists

    Read more

  • NIGER

    US aid worker kidnapped, guards killed in Niger

    Read more

COMMENT(S)