Mali

France Defense Minister Visits French Troops in Mali

March 15, 2013

“Le Drian was trying to assess troop morale and prepare the deployment of an African force to Mali, which will also serve French imperialist interests in the region.”

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Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper Rules-Out Canadian Combat Troops in Mali

March 14, 2013

“Harper didn’t rule out Canadian support for a UN-led peacekeeping force, saying only that any future decisions by Ottawa on Mali won’t be taken without input from parliamentarians.”

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France Foreign Minister Lobbying for a United Nations Security Council Vote on Peacekeepers in Mali in Early April

March 14, 2013

“The peacekeepers would take over from French and African forces currently fighting Islamic extremists who had taken control of northern Mali.”

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United Nations Report Accuses Mali Soldiers of Retaliatory Violence Against Ethnic Groups

March 13, 2013

“Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Kyung-wha Kang told the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva that members of the Peuhl, Tuareg and Arab ethnic groups were being targeted.”

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Algerian Gas Plant Hostage Crisis Mastermind Mokhtar Belmokhtar Killed in Northern Mali

March 4, 2013

“Mokhtar Belmokhtar – nicknamed Mr Marlboro after amassing a fortune by smuggling cigarettes and drugs across the Sahara – is said to have died along with 14 of his men in an attack by soldiers on a mountain stronghold.”

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French Investigative Judge: Mali Military Intervention Raises Threat of Domestic Terrorism in France

February 24, 2013

“The concerns of the French authorities were once largely limited to residents of North African Arab ancestry, like Algerians and Tunisians, but attention has broadened to include those French with roots in Mali, Senegal, Nigeria and Niger, the judge, Marc Trévidic, said in an interview.”

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Secret al-Qaeda List of 22 “Tips” for Avoiding Drone Strikes Discovered in Timbuktu, Mali

February 21, 2013

“The document also shows the coordination between al-Qaeda chapters, which security experts have called a source of increasing concern.”

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French Troops Still Attempting to Secure Northern Town of Gao in Mali

February 7, 2013

“French troops are now searcing out al-Qaeda-linked rebels who may be mixing among the population of the town, after new clashes raised questions about the military’s hold over the north.”

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Weapons and Explosives Abandoned by Islamist Rebels Discovered in Gao, Mali

February 7, 2013

“Soldiers combing abandoned jihadist hideouts and sand-dusted streets for weapons have found industrial-strength explosives, raising the specter Wednesday of bomb attacks by the jihadists who fled into the desert after the arrival of French forces.”

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France Asks United Nations Security Council to Consider a Peacekeeping Force in Mali

February 7, 2013

“France’s U.N. Ambassador Gerard Araud told reporters that he started discussions on the issue during closed council consultations on Mali, but insisted that a U.N. force would deploy only when security conditions permit.”

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French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius: France Will Focus Military Operations in Northern Mali

February 6, 2013

“France plans to begin pulling troops out of Mali from March and will focus its operations on flushing out Islamist rebels in the north of the country, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Tuesday.”

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France: Hundreds of al-Qaeda-Linked Militants Killed in Mali Since Beginning of Military Intervention

February 6, 2013

“France’s sole fatality so far has been a helicopter pilot who was killed at the start of the military operation.”

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France President Hollande: French Troops Expected to Begin Withdrawing From Mali in Late March

February 6, 2013

“President Francois Hollande says France may start pulling out its troops from a military intervention in Mali against Islamist extremists at the end of March.”

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Tuareg Rebels Gain Control of the Town of Menaka From Islamist Rebels in Mali

February 5, 2013

“Ag Assaleh said the MNLA entered Menaka because there were rebels from al Qaeda’s north African wing AQIM, as well as its splinter group MUJWA and Ansar Dine, operating nearby after being driven from the region’s main towns, Timbuktu and Gao.”

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Vice President Biden Meets With French President Hollande in Paris to Discuss Mali

February 5, 2013

“US Vice-President Joe Biden, speaking alongside French President Francois Hollande on Monday, said they had agreed African troops should take over “as quickly as reasonably possible”.”

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