Five UN peacekeepers have been killed in northern Mali after their vehicle hit an improvised explosive device (IED).
According to a “statement” by the UN, a convoy of Chadian peacekeepers came under fire from unknown assailants after they were hit by an IED. The attack left three others injured.
“The Secretary-General presents his sincere condolences to the families of the five peacekeepers who have died in the cause of peace and to the Government and people of Chad, and wishes a prompt recovery to those injured,” read an excerpt from the statement.
The Secretary-General presents his sincere condolences to the families of the five peacekeepers who have died.
BREAKING: Ambush in northeast Mali kills 5 UN peacekeepers from Chad, seriously injures 3 others – officials— BNO News (@BNONews) May 19, 2016
This year, the UN has recorded a dozen attacks against its peacekeepers in the Kidal region, resulting in the death of at least 12 personnel.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called for swift action to bring the perpetrators to justice.
He further stressed that attacks against UN peacekeepers constitute war crimes under international law.
Northern Mali is home to a separatist movement as well as to Islamist militants.
In light of this event, the UN has reiterated that they will continue the stabilization of Mali and the implementation of a peace agreement signed last year.
The UN sent peacekeepers to the country in 2013 to guard against militants but delays in implementing the peace deal has led to the strengthening of Jihadists.
Islamist militiants backed by Al Qaeda still represent the main threat, carrying out a series of attacks. This is despite French forces driving the militants from major urban centres in 2013.