Sat. Jan 22nd, 2022

Another dozen soldiers were seriously injured after their patrol was overrun by fighters in western Mali.

Four soldiers were killed and dozens more seriously injured when their patrol was ambushed by a suspected armed group in western Mali, the army said in a statement.

The attack took place late Wednesday afternoon near the town of Nara, about 30 km (19 miles) south of the border with Mauritania.

“A unit in the Nara area was the target of a complex attack combining IEDs [improvised explosive devices] and heavy weapons, “the statement said Thursday, adding that the death toll is tentative.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the ambush.

On Wednesday night, a brigade was attacked in Niena in the far south of the country, but without any casualties, the army said.

In the middle of the country, a mortar attack on Wednesday night targeted the Hombori camp, but there was no material damage.

Mali is the epicenter of a armed uprising which started in the north of the country in 2012 and spread to neighboring Niger and Burkina Faso three years later.

Thousands of people across the region were killed and some two million displaced by the conflict.

Despite the presence of French and United Nations troops, the conflict spread to Burkina Faso and Niger.

France intervened in 2013 and now has about 5,000 soldiers in the region, but plans to reduce that number to 2,500-3,000 by 2023.

The spiral of violence continued despite the coup that brought the army to power in Bamako in 2020.

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