An Al-Qaeda-affiliated jihadist group claimed to have killed 4 mercenaries from the Russian personal safety group Wagner in an ambush in central Mali, the SITE Intelligence monitoring group mentioned Monday.
The Assist Group for Islam and Muslims (GSIM), the primary jihadist alliance within the Sahel, mentioned it ambushed a bunch of Wagner troopers on Saturday as they rode bikes within the Bandiagara area from the village of Djallo in the direction of the mountains, in keeping with a press release by its propaganda arm authenticated by SITE.
Its fighters killed 4 of the group whereas the remaining fled, the assertion mentioned.
Two native elected officers confirmed the incident to AFP, whereas a senior Malian military official refused to verify or deny it.
“Four Russians were killed over the weekend by jihadists near Bandiagara,” one of many native officers, who requested anonymity, informed AFP.
A hospital supply within the area additionally confirmed the “death in combat of four Russians”, including that one had “passed through Mopti hospital”.
Russia has turn into a detailed ally of Mali’s ruling junta in its struggle towards a long-running jihadist insurgency.
The regime has introduced in Russian paramilitary fighters — described by Bamako as navy instructors however by Western nations as mercenaries — to assist the beleaguered armed forces.
Their deployment was a key think about prompting France, Mali’s former colonial energy and conventional ally, to tug its navy forces in another country.
The GSIM, whose affect on the bottom continues to develop, consists of myriad jihadist teams and operates primarily in Mali and neighbouring Burkina Faso.
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