The Malian army claimed on Sunday to have repelled four "terrorist" attacks in four localities in the north of the country, including one in the town of Ménaka, surrounded by Islamic State jihadists.
“The Malian Armed Forces (Fama) successively repelled terrorist attacks against four (military) posts in the localities of Labbezagan, Gossi, Tessalit and Ménaka,” said a press release published Sunday evening.
In Ménaka, an important town in the north-east of Mali close to the Nigerien border, "despite a significant concentration of terrorist fighters determined to do battle with our forces, the Fama inflicted a bloody defeat on them with the neutralization of several dozen terrorists and the arrest of around twenty", assured the Malian army.
The relay antenna of the Orange-Mali telephone operator in the city was damaged during the attack, according to a governorate official, making communications there very difficult.
The collection and verification of information is complicated by the difficulty of accessing remote sites and independent sources in a generally degraded context.
Since 2012, Mali has been plagued by the actions of groups affiliated with Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State organization, violence by proclaimed self-defence groups and banditry. The security crisis is coupled with a profound humanitarian and political crisis.
The north in particular has been plagued by an intensification of military confrontations since August. The withdrawal of the UN mission, pushed out by the ruling junta, triggered a race for control of the territory between the army, jihadists and separatists who have taken up arms against the central state.
The security crisis in this country led by a junta since 2020 has spread to the center as well as to neighbouring Burkina Faso and Niger, two countries also in the hands of military regimes since coups in 2022 and 2023 respectively.