At least 100 militants killed in French-Malian offensive - GulfToday

At least 100 militants killed in French-Malian offensive


Malian and French soldiers on patrol in Mali, where France has been aiding counter-insurgency efforts. File/Reuters

Gulf Today Report

A hundred militants were killed this month in a joint Franco-Malian offensive in the West African country's lawless centre, the nation’s army said in a statement on Tuesday.

"One hundred terrorists were neutralised, about 20 captured and several motorbikes and war equipment were seized" during the operation with France's Barkhane force, which aims to eradicate militants in the Sahel region, the Malian army said on its website.


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It said the campaign lasted from Jan.2 to Jan.20 and targeted areas bordering Burkina Faso, where militant groups with links to Al Qaeda and Daesh control large tracts of the remote desert and regularly carry out raids on the army and civilians.

France, Mali's former colonial ruler, first intervened in the country in 2013 to help drive back militant forces advancing on Bamako.

It now has 5,100 troops deployed across Africa's arid Sahel region, as part of its Barkhane operation.

“The purpose of this operation was to force the enemy out of its areas of refuge,” the army said.

Earlier this month the French military said it had killed 15 militants near Mali's border with Burkina Faso, where an Al Qaeda-linked group is active.

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