US sanctions Mali rebel leader

2013-02-26 22:32
Iyad Ag Ghali leader of the Islamic group of Ansar Dine at Kidal airport. (Romaric Ollo Hien, AFP)

Iyad Ag Ghali leader of the Islamic group of Ansar Dine at Kidal airport. (Romaric Ollo Hien, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Washington - The United States imposed sanctions on Tuesday on a Touareg leader whose extremist group seized much of northern Mali last year and prompted a French military intervention.

The State Department designated Iyad Ag Ghali, head of Ansar Dine, a global terrorist. The action blocks any assets he holds in the US and prohibits Americans from doing business with him. The UN also added Ag Ghali to its global sanctions list.

Ag Ghali's armed Islamists conquered much of northern Mali after a military coup in Mali's capital, aided by al-Qaeda's North Africa wing. In Timbuktu, he imposed strict Shari'ah law and forced thousands to flee; others were tortured and executed.

But a French-led intervention in January has turned the tide, forcing back Ag Ghali's rebels to mountainous hideouts near the Algeria border.

Separately, the US made further terror designations on a Pakistan-based militant group and one of its leaders on Tuesday.

Since 2006, the Commander Nazir Group "has run training camps, dispatched suicide bombers, provided safe haven for al-Qaeda fighters, and conducted cross-border operations in Afghanistan against the United States and its allies," a State Department statement said. The sanctions extend to key commander Malang Wazir.

The group is named after Maulvi Nazir, a member of the Taliban but one whose faction agreed to a cease-fire with the Pakistan military in 2009 and did not attack domestic targets.

Nazir was killed in a US drone strike in January.

Read more on:    us  |  mali  |  west africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Miley Cyrus can’t get enough of her new puppy

Miley's new dog is too adorable.



13 guilty pets
Meet SA's top poacher-catcher
The unusual pets of Instagram
Bertie sets a new world record!

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

Plant some seeds. Your innovative mind is on fire and your ingenious ideas may just be the seeds for future projects. You may more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.