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Guinea mourns dead soldiers

Guinea mourns dead soldiers

Guinea

The bodies of six Guinean peacekeepers killed in Mali arrived in the country on Wednesday.

Accompanying the bodies was the head of the UN mission in Mali, Mahamat Saleh Annadif.

President Alpha Conde paid tribute to the departed souls.

Family members were also at the airport to receive the bodies.

“My husband was among those who brought two victims of the Kidal attack last November. The same thing has happened to him,” a pregnant woman cried out.

But there were others who saw the loss as an act of bravery on the part of the soldiers.

“He opted for this. That is to defend his country. If God accepted it this way then I can only rejoice. I pray that the all powerful God would welcome him in heaven,” Foromoh Laurant, father of one of the deceased said.

Some Guineans have requested a return of the country’s soldiers from the mission saying they were there to ensure peace and not to die.

Guinea’s Defence Minister designate, Dr Mohamed Diané said “losing a dozen people in three months is really dramatic. We use this opportunity to extend our condolences to the bereaved families, the defense forces, the government and Guineans.”

Mali paid final tribute to the peacekeepers at the army headquarters before transporting them to their various hometowns for burial.

The peacekeepers were killed on February 12 during a jihadist attack in Kidal in northeastern Mali.

According to Minusma military officials, the camp occupied by the contingent was completely destroyed and the Guinean soldiers lost their possessions.

The corpse of Micheline Lamah, the only female killed in the attack will be sent to Conakry before the end of the week, a military source told news agencies.

The Minusma mission in Mali was deployed in 2013.

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