Mali attempts to retake rebel stronghold

Troops sent to Kidal after Tuareg separatists seized government buildings and engaged troops in a deadly firefight.

    Mali has sent troops on Monday to retake the rebel stronghold of Kidal after Tuareg separatists seized local government offices, taking hostages and engaging the army in a firefight in which dozens were killed.

    The government says Mali is now at war with what it calls terrorists.

    Eight soldiers and 28 fighters died in fighting on Saturday outside the regional governor's offices while around 30 civil servants were being held hostage by the militants, the government said.

    Mali's Prime Minister, Moussa Mara has criticised both the French and UN-forces in the country for allowing the attack to take place on Saturday. The attack ended a fragile truce brokered by France and the UN between Mali and the Tuareg rebels, bringing the country to the brink of a civil war.

    The former French colony was thrown into turmoil in 2012 when al-Qaeda-linked fighters took advantage of a Tuareg-led rebellion and seized control of the north. The fighters were then driven back in a French-led military operation last year.

    Al Jazeera's Mohammed Vall reports.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Many Pentecostal churches in the Niger Delta offer to deliver people from witchcraft and possession - albeit for a fee.

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    Prince Philip has done the world an extraordinary service by exposing the racist hypocrisy of "Western civilisation".

    China will determine the future of Venezuela

    China will determine the future of Venezuela

    There are a number of reasons why Beijing continues to back Maduro's government despite suffering financial losses.