UN troops in Mali fire on protesters

2015-01-27 18:19
Mali rebels

Mali rebels

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Bamako - United Nations peacekeepers in the northern Malian town of Gao killed at least one person on Tuesday when they used live rounds to disperse protesters threatening a base there, two witnesses said.

The UN mission was not immediately available to comment on the deaths but a spokesman earlier confirmed peacekeepers had fired tear gas to prevent crowds who were throwing stones at UN troops from storming the base.

A witness at the protest said UN troops started shooting after initially using tear gas to try to disperse crowds. He said he saw a dead protester who had been shot in the face.

A second witness said he saw four dead and four others who had been injured taken into Gao hospital. Medical officials there were not immediately available for comment.

The protests are over reports that UN peacekeepers were proposing to create a buffer zone in the desert north that would force pro-Bamako militia in the area to disarm while Tuareg separatist rebels to the north would not be affected.

Read more on:    mali  |  west africa

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