During counter-terrorist operation in Mali thirteen French soldiers have been killed in a helicopter collision, the French president’s office announced.
French President Emmanuel Macron expressed “deep sadness” over the biggest single loss of life for the French military since the 1980s.
An investigation has begun into how the two helicopters crashed into each other.
It happened around 19:40 local time (19:40 GMT) on November 25 near the borders of Burkina Faso and Niger where the aircraft were reinforcing ground troops who were pursuing djihadists, the French military explained.
Thousands of French troops have been deployed in Mali in anti-terrorist operaiton Barkhane in Mali.