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Latest Malian Military Items
A suicide bomber blew himself up in a northern Mali town — the first known suicide attack in the country since France deployed roughly 4,000 troops.
Three suspected jihadists arrested in the days since the liberation of the town of Timbuktu said Friday that Malian soldiers were torturing them with a method similar to waterboarding.
Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb infiltrated Mali's northern frontier in 2003, after a 10-year civil war to overthrow the Algerian government. This desert region has become a safe haven for numerous Islamists linked to al Qaeda.
The Defense Department is providing some support to French troops in their military campaign against al Qaeda in Mali, and is considering more assistance, depending on France's needs, Pentagon press secretary George Little said Tuesday.
Burned-out vehicles and scattered bullets dotted the streets of a central Malian town after radical Islamists retreated following days of French airstrikes, according to video obtained Sunday.
Mali's military claimed Friday that it has held control of a key town where Islamic extremists had battled forces for a week, though aid groups warned they were unable to reach the area to provide humanitarian assistance.
Deep inside caves, in remote desert bases, in the escarpments and cliff faces of northern Mali, Islamic extremist fighters have been burrowing into the earth, erecting a formidable set of defenses to protect what essentially has become al Qaeda's new country.
Soldiers arrested Mali's prime minister and forced him to resign before dawn on Tuesday, showing that the military remains the real power in this troubled West Africa nation, even though officers made a show of handing back authority to a civilian-led government after a coup in March.