Mali military takes control of Ber

2013-05-07 17:45
Chadian troops prepare in the desert near Tessalit, northern Mali. (Kenzo Tribouillard,AFP)

Chadian troops prepare in the desert near Tessalit, northern Mali. (Kenzo Tribouillard,AFP)

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Bamako - Soldiers from Mali and Burkina Faso pushed into the village of Ber, located 50km northeast of Timbuktu, which had previously been occupied by fighters from a Tuareg rebel group, the National Movement for the Liberation of the Azawad, or NMLA.

Malian military spokesperson Captain Samba Coulibaly spoke by telephone to The Associated Press from Ber on Tuesday. He said the town is now calm and the armed groups occupying the village appear to have fled.

The village has been a focal point in recent weeks of fighting between two of Mali's ethnic minorities - Tuaregs and Arabs. Last month, an Arab militia attacked the village, seizing control from the NMLA.

The militia accuses the NMLA of looting the stores of Arab merchants.

Read more on:    mali  |  west africa

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