French solders neutralise Islamists

In a combat operation French soldiers neutralised more than 30 Islamist militants in Mali in three separate missions on February 6-7, targeting al Qaeda and Islamic State affiliated groups, France’s armed forces announed.

France, the former colonial power in a number of West African countries, has about 4,500 soldiers in Sahel region in its counter-terrorism taskforce Operation Barkhane. The United Nations has a 13,000-strong peacekeeping operation in Mali.

In the Gourma region, soldiers of the French Barkhane force killed about 20 militants and destroyed several vehicles, while in the Liptako region, a stronghold of Islamic State, 10 more were killed, the French troops officaial informed.

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