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A French soldier secures a perimeter on the outskirt of Diabaly, Mali, some 460kms (320 miles) north of the capital Bamako Monday, Jan. 21, 2013. French and Malian troops were in the city whose capture by radical Islamists prompted the French military intervention. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

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Malian soldiers are jubilant as they return to Niono, Mali, from Diabaly, some 300 miles north of the capital, Bamako, on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

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Mali Fighting_Lea.jpg

Malian soldiers are jubilant as they return to Niono, Mali, from Diabaly, some 300 miles north of the capital, Bamako, on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

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A French soldier mans a machine gun as French troops pass through San in central Mali en route to Sevare, Friday, Jan. 18, 2013. (AP Photo/Harouna Traore)

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MALI.jpg

A French soldier mans a machine gun as French troops pass through San in central Mali en route to Sevare, Friday, Jan. 18, 2013. (AP Photo/Harouna Traore)

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mali-fighting_live_2_mugshot_four_by_three.jpg

French troops arrive at Bamako's airport on Jan. 17, 2013, as fighting raged in one Mali town, airstrikes hit another and army troops raced to protect a third on the seventh day of the French-led military intervention to wrest back Mali's north from al Qaeda-linked groups. (Associated Press)

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Mali Fighting_Live.jpg

French troops arrive at Bamako's airport on Jan. 17, 2013, as fighting raged in one Mali town, airstrikes hit another and army troops raced to protect a third on the seventh day of the French-led military intervention to wrest back Mali's north from al Qaeda-linked groups. (Associated Press)

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Fighters from the al Qaeda-linked Ansar Dine stand guard in Timbuktu, Mali, as they prepare to publicly lash a member of the Islamic Police found guilty of adultery. (Associated Press)

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Fighters from the al Qaeda-linked Ansar Dine stand guard in Timbuktu, Mali, as they prepare to publicly lash a member of the Islamic Police found guilty of adultery. (Associated Press)

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The French military moves in at the airport in Bamako, Mali. Islamists prevented residents from leaving the towns they are holding, and some fear they will be used as human targets. (Associated Press)

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French troops stand guard along the road leading from Markala to Niono in central Mali on Wednesday as they pressed northward toward territory occupied by radical Islamists. In announcing the start of the land assault, military officials said soldiers would be in direct combat "within hours." (Associated Press)

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French troops stand guard along the road leading from Markala to Niono in central Mali on Wednesday as they pressed northward toward territory occupied by radical Islamists. In announcing the start of the land assault, military officials said soldiers would be in direct combat "within hours." (Associated Press)

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mali-fighting_lea_mugshot_four_by_three.jpg

Legionnaires of France's 1st Foreign Cavalry Regiment, based in Orange, France, deploy at the airport in Bamako, Mali. An official at France's Defense Ministry says the country will "gradually deploy" a total of 2,500 troops to Mali, and the French president says the military operation will last until security has been restored and African forces are ready to take charge. (AP Photo/Arnaud Roine, French Army Communications Audiovisual Office [ECPAD])

Mali Fighting_Lea.jpg

Mali Fighting_Lea.jpg

Legionnaires of France's 1st Foreign Cavalry Regiment, based in Orange, France, deploy at the airport in Bamako, Mali. An official at France's Defense Ministry says the country will "gradually deploy" a total of 2,500 troops to Mali, and the French president says the military operation will last until security has been restored and African forces are ready to take charge. (AP Photo/Arnaud Roine, French Army Communications Audiovisual Office [ECPAD])

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Soldiers man a checkpoint at a bridge in Markala, approximately 40 km outside Segou on the road to Diabaly, in central Mali, Monday, Jan. 14, 2013. (AP Photo/Harouna Traore)

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Soldiers man a checkpoint at a bridge in Markala, approximately 40 km outside Segou on the road to Diabaly, in central Mali, Monday, Jan. 14, 2013. (AP Photo/Harouna Traore)

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British soldiers gather next to a French army truck inside a British transport plane at a base in Evreux on Monday, part of Britain's authorization over the weekend to send two C-17 transport planes to help France get more troops to Mali. (Associated Press)

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British soldiers gather next to a French army truck inside a British transport plane at a base in Evreux on Monday, part of Britain's authorization over the weekend to send two C-17 transport planes to help France get more troops to Mali. (Associated Press)

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A French airman (center) talks with British military personnel at the French army base in Evreux, 56 miles north of Paris, on Monday, Jan. 14, 2013, before the takeoff the British C17 transport plane en route to Mali. British military equipment was readied for deployment in Mali on Monday as international intervention in the African country increased following advances in the north by Islamic extremists with reported links to al Qaeda. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

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France Mali Fighting_Lea(2).jpg

A French airman (center) talks with British military personnel at the French army base in Evreux, 56 miles north of Paris, on Monday, Jan. 14, 2013, before the takeoff the British C17 transport plane en route to Mali. British military equipment was readied for deployment in Mali on Monday as international intervention in the African country increased following advances in the north by Islamic extremists with reported links to al Qaeda. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)