French envoys meet Mali govt over raid deaths

2017-11-07 21:33
Mali soldiers  (Jerome Delay, AP)

Mali soldiers (Jerome Delay, AP)

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

Bamako - France has sent high-level representatives to talk to the Malian government after a French anti-terror raid killed Malian troops held by the jihadists.

Defence Minister Tiena Coulibaly met on October 31 with the French ambassador and the commander of France's military force in Mali, according to a ministry communique received by AFP on Monday.

They discussed a night-time operation on October 23-24 "in which Malian troops, held by the terrorists, were killed," it said.

On October 26, French military headquarters announced that 15 jihadists had been killed.

But on Sunday, a Malian military source said 11 soldiers who had been captured between July 2016 and March 2017 had died in the operation.

The incident occurred near Abeibara, in the northeastern Kidal region, in an attack on a group affiliated to al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, a jihadist organisation better known by its French acronym of AQMI, according to the French statement.

Fighter jets and helicopters backed the operation, it said.

The accidental deaths come at a time when France is stepping up its anti-terror activity in the Sahel.

France has a 4 000-man anti-terrorist force, called Barkhane, in northern Mali and is supporting a five-nation force, the so-called G5 Sahel, to buttress security across the sprawing region south of the Sahara.

"Our soldiers who were prisoners of the jihadists were definitely killed during the French anti-terrorist operation in northern Mali," a senior Malian defence ministry official said on Tuesday, requesting anonymity.

"A French delegation which was received at the ministry here acknowledged the facts."

According to the Malian communique, the French envoys explained in the October 31 meeting that the operation aimed at destroying "a terrorist group's training camp" but "upstream reconnaissance was not able to determine the presence of Malian soldiers."

Read more on:    al qaeda  |  france  |  mali  |  west africa

Join the conversation!

24.com 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

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

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 24.com network.

Settings

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.