French Forces “Neutralize” 10 Militants in Mali

French Forces “Neutralize” 10 Militants in MaliFrench Forces “Neutralize” 10 Militants in Mali

French forces in Mali have killed or captured some 10 fighters belonging to a group that claimed last month’s attack on a hotel in the capital, Bamako. Earlier this week, Mali re-invoked a state of emergency.

France’s Ministry of Defense said on Tuesday that its forces in northern Mali had “neutralized” about 10 fighters in a weekend operation against the Al Mourabitoun militant group.

Al Mourabitoun, alongside other groups, claimed the attack on Bamako’s Radisson Blu hotel last month, AFP reported.

Two gunmen stormed the Radisson Blu luxury hotel on November 20, killing 19 people including foreigners before Malian security forces ended the hostage situation and killed the assailants.

The attack was claimed as a joint operation by Al Mourabitoun and Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb. Another militant group, the Macina Liberation Front also later claimed the attack in cooperation with Ansare Dine group.

Terrorist groups tied to Al-Qaeda gained control over large swaths of northern Mali in 2012 before being largely pushed back by a French-led military intervention in 2013 to restore order.

France supports a UN mission to bring peace to Mali and fight militant groups operating in lawless areas in the north.

On Monday, Mali declared a state of emergency for the rest of the year to thwart any potential terrorist attacks.