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Two killed as jihadists attack Mali military posts

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Suspected jihadists staged twin attacks Monday on two Malian military posts near the border with Burkina Faso, killing two civilians and burning 22 vehicles, local officials and the army said.

The camps at Mondoro and Boulkessy in central Mali “were attacked this morning… by terrorists”, the Malian armed forces said in a tweet.

“Armed jihadists came at night to Mondoro. They went to the command post of the camp… and fired. The army withdrew. The jihadists’ fire killed two civilians and wounded three,” a local official said.

“The assailants made off with two vans filled with ammunition, two camels and 12 cows,” the official added.

The other camp at Boulkessy run by the Malian army and G5 Sahel, a five-nation joint taskforce created in 2014 to try to tackle jihadist violence in the region was attacked by suspected members of the Ansarul Islam outfit, the G5 said in a statement.

They came on “several vehicles loaded with heavy arms and on motorbikes,” it said, without giving any casualty figures.

The attackers burnt 22 vehicles, nearly half of the automatic weapons in the camp and a large cache of ammunition, a military source said.

Northern Mali fell into the hands of jihadists in 2012 before the militants were forced out by a French-led military intervention.

But much of the region remains chronically unstable and jihadist-led violence has spread to the centre of the country, often sparking bloodshed between ethnic groups.

In addition to its own armed forces, the fragile country hosts France’s mission in the Sahel, UN peacekeeping troops as well as contingents from a five-nation anti-jihadist group.

Neighbouring Burkina Faso and Niger have also been infiltrated by insurgents, at the cost of hundreds of lives.


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