According to the army, six soldiers were killed and 20 were injured in simultaneous attacks on three army bases in central Mali on Sunday. The Malian army said in a statement that “armed terrorist groups” used “suicide trucks full of explosives” to attack targets in Sevare, Niono, and Bapho.
According to recordings released to AFP on Sunday by a person close to the accused assailants, the attacks were claimed by a group associated with the fiery preacher Amadou Koufa. The Katiba of Macina is a member of the Group to Support Islam and Muslims (GSIM), an Al-Qaeda-linked organization that is the Sahel’s largest jihadist network.
In an audio message to AFP, a member of the Katiba of Macina said, “On Sunday morning, the mujahideen of the Katiba of Macina struck three camps of the (Malian armed forces.” According to the source, Bapho and Niono were hit, which corresponds to information from Mali’s army. It also said that Segou was attacked, even though the Malian army didn’t plan to attack Segou.
Within five minutes of each other, we arrived at these camps at the same time. We caused them substantial damage in addition to the deaths. “According to the audio tape, according to military officials, the assaults took place at 0500 GMT in Sevare, Niono, and Bapho, all in the country’s central region.
One of the sources said, “There was a double terrorist attack with guns fired and machinery exploding” in Sevare. The army replied by launching a counter-offensive. The source continued, “We are now unable to provide a toll.” As part of our partnership, we’ve asked MINUSMA (the UN Mission in Mali) to dispatch a fast intervention force near the Sevare camp to help secure it.” The information was validated by a different military source within MINUSMA.
Mali, one of the world’s poorest countries, has been wracked by a decade-long terrorist insurgency that has claimed thousands of lives and displaced hundreds of thousands. An elected president didn’t do enough to stop the insurgency, which caused a lot of people to be angry. The military took over in August 2020.