News / Africa

France: 15 Islamist Rebels Killed in Northern Mali Fighting

A Malian soldier looks on during fighting with Islamists in Gao, Feb. 21, 2013.
A Malian soldier looks on during fighting with Islamists in Gao, Feb. 21, 2013.
VOA News
France says Malian and French troops killed at least 15 Islamist militants Thursday during fighting to retake government buildings in the northern Mali town of Gao.

The Defense Ministry says two French soldiers and four Malian troops were wounded in the fighting, which was centered on the town hall and mayor's residence that had been occupied by the militants.

The militants are part of the Islamist group known as MUJAO, the Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa. The group was one of three that ruled northern Mali for about 10 months before French and Malian army forces retook control of the region last month.

A Malian Defense Ministry spokesman told VOA that while Gao has been liberated, "pockets of insecurity" remained in the city.

In another incident, a car bomb exploded Thursday near a military base in the northern city of Kidal, killing the bomber and one civilian. The base was being used by French and Chadian forces.

A string of attacks in the north has raised concern that Islamist groups will carry out guerrilla-style warfare with an eye on retaking control of the region once French troops depart.

In January, French troops entered Mali, a former French colony, at the request of the Bamako government to help drive back Islamist militants who had seized northern cities and were moving toward the capital.

France has said it plans to begin withdrawing its forces and hand over military operations to the Malian army and an African force. French officials have also urged the United Nations to establish a peacekeeping mission in Mali.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Anonymous
February 22, 2013 11:47 AM
Gods bless them

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid