“Mali: Deadly Attack on River Boat Claims Lives of 49 Civilians”

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Islamist Militants Kill 49 Civilians in Mali River Boat Attack

Islamist militants have carried out a deadly attack on a river boat in northeastern Mali, resulting in the deaths of at least 49 civilians, according to reports from the country’s interim government. This tragic incident highlights the ongoing security challenges in the region.

Simultaneous Assault on Army Camp Claims Lives of 15 Soldiers

In addition to the attack on the river boat, the militants also targeted an army camp, resulting in the deaths of 15 soldiers. The government has declared a three-day period of national mourning to honor the victims of these attacks.

Persistent Islamist Threat Despite Military Efforts

Despite the Malian military’s efforts and its reliance on Russian Wagner Group mercenaries, the Islamist threat in the country continues to grow. The situation has deteriorated to the point where the northern city of Timbuktu has been under blockade for weeks, and there have been several recent attacks on transportation infrastructure.

Details of the Attacks

Reports suggest that the militants targeted the river boat while it was traveling on the River Niger from the town of Gao to Mopti. The vessel was attacked with at least three rockets aimed at its engines. The boat operator, Comanav, reported that the vessel was immobilized on the river, prompting the army to intervene and evacuate passengers.

Challenges Facing Mali

Mali has been grappling with instability and insecurity for years, with an insurgency linked to groups like al-Qaeda and the Islamic State taking root in the north of the country in 2012. This insurgency has since spread across the Sahel region and into coastal West African nations. Despite a change in government following mass protests in 2020, Mali’s military leadership has struggled to effectively combat the Islamist militant threat, leaving the country in a state of ongoing instability.

Please note that the information presented in this report is based on the government’s account and has not been independently verified by the BBC.

SOURCE: Ref Image from RNZ

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