Former Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) emir Mokhtar Belmokhtar (aka "Laaouar") assembled a band of suicide bombers in northern Mali, ANI reported on Thursday (December 6th). In a video statement, Belmokhtar said that his new katibat included foreign jihadists.
The Algerian terrorist (real name Khaled Abou El Abass) also threatened reprisals against any country that tried to intervene in Mali.
Belmokhtar reportedly quit AQIM during the past fortnight after his demotion as head of the El Moulethemine brigade.
His video comes as rival Touareg rebel groups and the Malian government conduct mediation talks in Burkina Faso.