News / Africa

Men Wearing Explosives Arrested in Mali

Malian soldiers stand by a motorcycle used by a suicide bomber at the entrance of Gao, northern Mali, Feb. 8, 2013.
Malian soldiers stand by a motorcycle used by a suicide bomber at the entrance of Gao, northern Mali, Feb. 8, 2013.
VOA News
Malian officials say two men who were allegedly wearing explosives were arrested near Gao on Saturday, a day after a suicide bomber attacked a military checkpoint near the northern city.

A Malian military spokesman and witnesses say the two men were detained on a road that leads into Gao.

Malian troops bolstered security after Friday's attack. A local journalist said the bombing occurred less than 10 meters from the military checkpoint.

The Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO) claimed responsibility for the Friday blast and vowed to carry out more attacks against Malian soldiers who sided with what it called "enemies of Islam." 

MUJAO is one of several military groups that had strongholds in northern Mali before French forces intervened in January.

Radio France Internationale said Saturday that Malian authorities had issued arrest warrants for the leaders of MUJAO as well as Ansar Dine and the Tuareg separatist group MNLA. All three militant groups have been linked to unrest in the country's north.

Friday's violence overshadowed the arrival of 70 European Union military trainers. They were the first of 500 military instructors who are being deployed to help strengthen the Malian army.

The Mali crisis began in early 2012 when the Tuareg separatist group MNLA launched a rebellion in the north. The MNLA and Islamist militants seized control of the north after the March coup in Bamako, but the MNLA was soon swept aside as the militants imposed harsh Islamic law on the region.

At the request of Mali's government, France entered its former colony last month to drive back the al-Qaida-linked militants who had begun moving in the direction of the capital, Bamako.

France wants to begin handing over its four-week-old military operation to the Malian army and African forces.  But officials say any transfer will have to wait until Mali's security situation stabilizes.

France has proposed the United Nations establish a peacekeeping mission in Mali.  Diplomats have said privately that a U.N. Security Council resolution authorizing the mission is not likely before the end of February.  It could take another two months after that to transition the African forces into U.N. peacekeepers.


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

You May Like

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. More

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

Dropout rate at an all-time high in South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during 3-year civil war More

Tennessee Songbirds Fly Coop Long Before Tornadoes Arrive

Researchers say birds apparently alerted to danger by sounds at frequencies below range of human hearing More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid