Mali blast death toll rises to over 70

2017-01-19 22:07
(iStock)

(iStock)

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

Bamako - More than 70 people died in a suicide bomb attack in Mali targeting militia groups committed to restoring peace in the African country, according to an updated toll on Thursday.

The update came as Mali's President Ibrahim Boubacar Keta travelled to Gao in the troubled north to visit injured survivors and relatives of the dead, the head of state's office announced on Twitter.

"There are more than 70 victims," a medical source in Gao told AFP.

The death toll could rise further given the large number of injured, the source said. The wounded have been evacuated to Bamako.

A previous toll from Wednesday's attack had put the number of dead at 60 with 115 injured.

The assault targeted a camp housing former rebels and pro-government militia who are signatories to a 2015 peace accord struck with the government.

President Keita has ordered three days of national mourning.

The attack, Mali's worst in years, was claimed by the group of Algerian jihadist Mokhtar Belmokhtar, allied to Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM).

It occurred as former rebels from the Tuareg-led CMA movement prepared to go on a joint patrol with pro-government militia members under the terms of the peace deal.

Mali's north fell under the control of Tuareg-led rebels and jihadist groups linked to Al-Qaeda in 2012. The Islamists sidelined the rebels to take sole control.

Although they were largely ousted by a French-led military operation in January 2013, implementation of the peace accord has been piecemeal with insurgents still active across large parts of the region.

The joint patrols, which also include regular Malian army troops, are supposed to help prepare for the reorganisation of the army.

In Paris, meanwhile, the French military on Thursday said armed groups in Mali launched 118 attacks against the army, UN peacekeepers and French troops last year.

Fifteen Malian soldiers, 24 members of the Minusma UN peacekeeping force and four French soldiers lost their lives, French army spokesperson Patrik Steiger told a weekly press briefing in Paris.

The attacks "were generally from explosive devices, suicide bombings, mines, rocket and mortar fire and the aim was to kill while generating the maximum amount of publicity possible," Steiger said.

The United Nations has deployed 13 000 troops in Mali while France, the former colonial power, has an additional 4 000 soldiers stationed there.

The UN Security Council agreed on Wednesday to consider setting up a sanctions regime for Mali to punish those who are hindering efforts to implement a 2015 peace accord.

Read more on:    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
 

6 myths about male cancer

It is important to be aware of the most prevalent cancer diseases amongst men in our country.

 
 

You won't want to miss...

Who are the highest paid models of 2017?
10 gorgeous plus-sized models who aren't Ashley Graham
5 top leg exercises for men
10 best dressed men of 2017
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
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.