19 - 06
More than 30 hostages have been rescued from a terrorist attack that struck an eco-lodge in the outskirts of the Malian capital, Bamako, on Sunday evening.
It was the prompt intervention of Malian Special Forces, in addition to the Barkhane, a pan-Sahelian anti-terrorist taskforce, and UN soldiers from the MINUSMA mission that facilitated the rescue of these civilians from the Kangaba Camp. About as many Malians as foreigners, including Egyptians, Kenyans, and French citizens, were rescued.
Sadly however, two civilians lost their lives in the attack. A police officer and a civilian were also injured in the shootout.
Security forces are reported to have killed four attackers, and recovered a submachine gun and “six bottles of explosives” from an injured attacker.
The attack in Bamako came a day after jihadists overran a military base in the country’s restive north, killing two soldiers, abducting an unspecified number and seizing all materiel. This attack in the north was claimed by the jihadist movement known as Jamaat Nusrat al-Islam wa-Musleemin, and it is unclear whether Sunday’s attack was orchestrated by the same group; no terror group has yet claimed responsibility.
The Kangaba Camp is owned by a Frenchman and is frequented by foreigners, and, at the time of the attack, had people involved in European Union, United Nations, and French missions in Mali.
The attack comes slightly over a year since the North South Hotel in Bamako was attacked by jihadists, with the attackers presumably aiming to hit staff from the European Union Training Mission; this attack was however foiled, with an assailant killed.