Attack on army camp in Mali leaves 29 dead

Malian soldiers.PHOTO/AFP
Malian soldiers.PHOTO/Reuters

Suspected Islamist militants killed 29 Malian soldiers on Thursday in an attack on a base in the country’s northeast, the army said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack in the town of Tarkint, which is about 125 km (78 miles) north of the city of Gao. Mali’s army has repeatedly suffered heavy casualties from jihadist fighters active in the area with links to al Qaeda and Islamic State.

Earlier in the day, the army said that just two soldiers had died but tweeted later that the death toll had “heavily evolved” to 29 killed and five wounded.

Last November, some 50 Malian soldiers were killed in a terrorist attack on a military post in northeast Mali.

Mali’s President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita said in February that his government was seeking talks with extremist groups in an effort to end an insurgency that has engulfed the country.