BAMAKO (Reuters) – No less than 53 troopers and one civilian have been killed in an assault on a military put up in northern Mali, the federal government stated, in one of many deadliest strikes towards the West African nation’s navy in current reminiscence.
The authorities first reported the assault in Indelimane, Menaka area, on Friday, however gave a decrease provisional loss of life toll.
“Closely armed unidentified males attacked round midday. The assault began with shellfire…Then they retreated towards Niger,” authorities spokesman Yaya Sangare advised Reuters on Saturday.
He added the loss of life toll remained provisional as corpses had been present process identification, and that the military was enterprise a combing operation on the bottom with assist from worldwide forces, together with French troops from the Barkhane operation and U.N. peacekeepers.
“The dispatched reinforcements discovered 54 our bodies together with one civilian, 10 survivors, and located appreciable materials injury,” Sangare stated on Twitter earlier on Saturday.
France stated one in every of its troopers there had died after his automobile hit an improvised explosive system, in response to an announcement by the French presidency.
The assault follows jihadist raids in late September that underscored the growing attain and class of armed teams working within the area.
From their stronghold in Mali, teams with al Qaeda and Islamic State hyperlinks have been capable of fan out throughout the Sahel, destabilising elements of Niger and Burkina Faso.
Thirty-eight Malian troopers had been killed on Sept. 30 in coordinated assaults on two military bases in central Mali, which has slipped from authorities management regardless of the presence of the French military and different worldwide forces.
Reporting by Tiemoko Diallo, Paul Lorgerie, Souleymane Ag Anara and Michel Rose in Paris; Writing by Alessandra Prentice and Juliette Jabkhiro; Enhancing by Dan Grebler, Sonya Hepinstall, Alexandra Hudson and Christina Fincher