Mali Mourns as Soldiers, Police Killed In Terror Attacks

Authorities in Mali have declared three days of mourning after two terror attacks killed 42 soldiers on August 7, 2022 and injuring 22 others near the town of Tessit in the Gao Region. The government said the "complex and coordinated attack" involved drones, car bombs and artillery, blaming an affiliate of the so-called "Islamic State" (IS) group.

This is the second such attack, after miltants killed 142 people in Diallassagou and two surrounding villages in the Mopti Region in June, 2022.

Mali is ruled by a military junta after Colonel Assimi Goita overthrew the democratic government in 2020, in part over frustration at its failure to rein in years of insurgency.

Terror attacks have nevertheless remained common.

Also on August 7, 2022, five police officers were killed when extremists attacked a police station in the town of Sona, near the border with Burkina Faso. Authorities said that three other officers remain missing.

After Goita's coup, Mali's traditional security partner and former coloniser, France, withdrew its military forces. Observers fear this has created a power vacuum for yet more attacks to occur.

The country now looks to Russia and Russia-backed mercenaries from the Wagner group for equipment, training and support.

InFocus

A view of Bamako, Mali with the Niger River in the background.

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