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Fri Jan 11, 2013, 07:27 PM

 

France Sends Troops to Mali to Help Counter Islamist Advance

Source: The New York Times



BAMAKO, Mali - France sent armed forces into combat in Mali on Friday, answering an urgent plea from the government of its former colony in West Africa to help blunt a sudden and aggressive advance into the center of the country by Islamist extremist militants who have been in control of the north for much of the past year.

French officials confirmed that the French forces, which included paratroopers and helicopter gunships, had engaged in fighting with the Islamists after landing at a major airfield in the central Mali town of Sévaré.

It was not immediately clear how many French troops had been sent or from where, but a Western diplomat in neighboring Niger said the Islamist forces numbered between 800 and 900 fighters, with about 200 vehicles.

"French forces brought their support this afternoon to Malian army units to fight against terrorist elements," President François Hollande of France said in a statement to reporters in Paris. "This operation will last as long as necessary."

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/12/world/africa/mali-islamist-rebels-france.html

9 replies, 1868 views

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Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
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Reply France Sends Troops to Mali to Help Counter Islamist Advance (Original post)
UnrepentantLiberal Jan 2013 OP
ellisonz Jan 2013 #1
UnrepentantLiberal Jan 2013 #2
ellisonz Jan 2013 #3
Lucky Luciano Jan 2013 #4
Ghost Dog Jan 2013 #5
ellisonz Jan 2013 #7
Sunlei Jan 2013 #9
Sunlei Jan 2013 #8
dipsydoodle Jan 2013 #6

Response to UnrepentantLiberal (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 07:30 PM

1. Bravo President Hollande! Bravo!

Let no one have any illusions - these extremists will impose harsh rule that brutalizes the civilian population.

Let us pray for a swift end to the fighting.

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 07:42 PM

2. And they're destroying UNESCO World Heritage sites.

 

Assholes.

Mali: Islamists take pickaxes to Timbuktu's ancient mausoleums

Armed groups occupying Timbuktu in northern Mali have used pickaxes to smash up any remaining mausoleums in the ancient city.

The rebels' ruthless implementation of their version of Islamic law comes just days after the United Nations approved a military force to wrest back control of the conflict-ridden area.

"Not a single mausoleum will remain in Timbuktu, Allah doesn't like it," Abou Dardar, leader of the Islamist Ansar Dine group, told AFP. "We are in the process of smashing all the hidden mausoleums in the area."

Witnesses confirmed the claims.

Anything that doesn't fall under Islam "is not good. Man should only worship Allah," Mohamed Alfoul, a member of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), said.

The vandalism of the Muslim saints' tombs in the UNESCO World Heritage site came a day after other Islamists in the northern city of Gao announced they had amputated two people's hands.

More: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/mali/9764434/Mali-Islamists-take-pickaxes-to-Timbuktus-ancient-mausoleums.html

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #3)

Sat Jan 12, 2013, 12:35 AM

4. I have always wanted to go to the Festival au Desert.

It is quite sad what these religious nutjob shitstains have done.

If only there was a collateral damage free way to exterminate all of them. Oh well.

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Response to Lucky Luciano (Reply #4)

Sat Jan 12, 2013, 05:19 AM

5. Ali Farka Touré & Toumani Diabaté - Debe live at Bozar



Tinariwen - Live at Womad

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #5)

Sat Jan 12, 2013, 07:01 PM

7. Beautiful.

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #5)

Sat Jan 12, 2013, 07:32 PM

9. Love Tinariwen, I hope they are safe!

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Response to ellisonz (Reply #3)

Sat Jan 12, 2013, 07:30 PM

8. Mali has some very good bands, this is very distressing news!!! I hope France can kick em out!!

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Response to UnrepentantLiberal (Original post)

Sat Jan 12, 2013, 12:27 PM

6. African states ready troops as France bombs Mali rebels

(Reuters) - French aircraft pounded Islamist fighters in Mali for a second day on Saturday and neighbouring states accelerated plans to send in troops in an international campaign to crush the rebels.

http://uk.reuters.com/article/2013/01/12/uk-mali-rebels-idUKBRE90B09Y20130112

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