- Neal Boortz defends Hillary Clinton for representing child rapist
- House task force to recommend National Guard on border, faster deportations
- Top federal judge uses pizza to explain complex Obamacare situation
- Obama, Biden overhaul job training programs
- Drought-plagued Californians turn to paint to keep lawns green
- ISIL now forcing Iraqi shopkeepers to veil mannequins in Mosul
- 11 parents of Nigeria’s abducted girls die
- Genetic mapping triggers new hope on schizophrenia
- Turkish P.M. Erdogan won’t speak to Obama, but he’ll take calls from Biden
- Israel’s ambassador praises Obama, slams Human Rights Watch report
France: U.S. helping support Mali operation
Question of the Day
BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Sunday that the United States is providing communications and transport help for an international military intervention aimed at wresting Mali's north out of the hands of Islamist extremists.
Mr. Fabius said the three-day-old, French-led military operation has succeeded in halting the extremists' advance, which had prompted the intervention. He sought to stress that the operation is gaining international backing, despite concern about the risks of the mission in a stretch of lawless desert in weakly governed country.
"We have the support of the Americans for communications and transport," Mr. Fabius said on RTL radio Sunday. Britain, Denmark and other European countries also are helping, Mr. Fabius said, but he gave no details about the backup.
U.S. officials on Saturday said they had offered to send drones to Mali. British Prime Minister David Cameron agreed to send aircraft to help transport troops.
Some 400 French troops have been deployed to Mali in the all-out effort to win back the territory from the well-armed rebels, who seized control of an area larger than France itself following a coup in Mali in March and made new advances last week.
Mr. Fabius said the military effort, including airstrikes by jets and combat helicopters on at least four towns, succeeded in blocking the advance.
"The Islamist offensive has been stopped," Mr. Fabius said. "Blocking the terrorists ... we've done it."
Residents of the city of Gao confirmed that the targets included the city's airport, as well as the building that served as the base for the town's feared Islamist police, who have carried out numerous punishments, including the public amputations of accused thieves. The insurgents adhere to a harsh interpretation of Islamic law.
But the intervention has come with a human cost in the city of Konna, the first to be bombed Friday and Saturday. Mali presidential spokesman Ousmane Sy said 11 Malians were killed. The town's mayor, Sory Diakite, said the dead included three children who threw themselves into a river and drowned trying to avoid the falling bombs.
French President Francois Hollande authorized the military operation, code-named "Serval" for a sub-Saharan wildcat, after it became clear that the advancing rebels could push past defenses in Mopti, the first town on the government-controlled side, which has the largest concentration of Malian soldiers.
The decision catapulted the world and Mali's neighbors into a military operation that diplomats had earlier said would not take place until at least September.
On Saturday, the body representing nations in West Africa announced that they would send hundreds of troops of their own, including at least 500 each from Niger, Burkina Faso and Senegal, as well as from Nigeria.
TWT Video Picks
U.S. appetite for drugs begets violence migrants are fleeing
- IRS seeks help destroying another 3,200 computer hard drives
- D.C. appeals panel deals big blow to Obamacare subsidies
- 'Straight White Guy Festival' supposedly set for Ohio park
- Rick Perry: County jails in Texas have taken in 203,000 "criminal aliens"
- Hamas terrorists wear Israeli army uniforms to ambush soldiers in Gaza
- ISTOOK: The secret is out: 'Unaccompanied minors' are only one-fourth of illegal border-crossers
- Jewish woman booted from JetBlue flight over fight with Palestinian
- Tony Dungy doubles down on Michael Sam remarks: 'Drafting him would bring much distraction'
- Obama family set to buy $4.25M desert home in California: report
- Rep. Jared Polis' anti-fracking crusade riles Colorado
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq