France go it alone in Mali

Body count has been upped to 6 MINUSMA peacekeepers from Burkina Faso KIA between Tombouctou and Goundam in what appears to be an AQIM attack (still TBC).

RIP

BAMAKO, Mali — Gunmen ambushed a U.N. convoy in conflict-wracked northern Mali on Thursday killing six peacekeepers and wounding five others, the U.N. said. All the victims were from Burkina Faso.

The U.N. mission in this west African nation has the highest number of casualties of the world body's 16 far-flung peacekeeping operations. The latest attack raised the toll to 42 peacekeepers killed and 166 wounded since the Mali mission was established in April 2013.


http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2015/07/02/world/africa/ap-af-mali-violence.html?_r=0
 
In spite of mounting casualties, MINUSMA's mandate has been extended for another year:

Algiers — Algeria welcomed the extension, until 30 June 2016, of the mandate of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), said Wednesday the spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Abdelaziz Benali Cherif.


"We welcome the adoption, by the Security Council, of the resolution 2227 (2015) extending until 30 June 2016, the mandate of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA)," Benali Cherif told APS in a statement.


http://allafrica.com/stories/201507021642.html
 
FRA MoD Le Drian is in the USA to meet with US Defense Secretary Ash Carter and some interesting info on continuous US support to FRA Ops in Africa were given during a speech at the Pentagon.

Le Drian was in Washington to meet with his counterpart, US Defense Secretary Ash Carter. The two nations have strengthened their ties in recent years, something Carter acknowledged in his opening statement.

"This is the best our defense relationship has been in a very long time, probably ever," Carter said. "And we are committed to strengthening it still."

In particular, France has taken the lead in operations in Africa, with the US providing air refueling and cargo transport support, something Carter said will continue.

Carter also indicated the two nations are increasing their intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance-sharing capabilities.

"Our cooperation overall with France and the security sector has never been stronger, [and] that is true about the sharing of military information and intelligence information," Carter said. "We took some efforts this morning to increase that yet further. [The] minister mentioned remotely piloted aircraft as one example of that in his statement, so that was one of the things we discussed today that is applicable."

Asked for further details, a Pentagon spokeswoman said: "The two leaders discussed how to further enhance intelligence sharing between our military forces; specifically ways to streamline US-France operational planning and information sharing for counterterrorism operations."


More:

http://www.defensenews.com/story/de...ic-state-terrorist-army-france-isil/29771641/
 
Malian media report the death of terrorist Mohamed Ali Ag Wadoussene.

He was responsible for the kidnapping of Frenchmen Serge Lazarevic and Philippe Verdon on 24 November 2011 in Hombori.

He had been arrested, escaped, re-arrested and finally exchanged for Serge Lazarevic, Philippe Verdon having been murdered in 2013 while detained.

French forces are reported to have killed Mohamed Ali Ag Wadoussene in the Tigharghar mountains of North Mali, an extremely hostile area where terrorists have hidden in the past.

There is no confirmation by FRA sources so far.

See more at: http://maliactu.net/mali-lutte-cont...ussene-tue-par-barkhane/#sthash.KlPXeXRJ.dpuf
 
Now in US news, with the added info that another 12 were captured.

Mali Extremist Traded for French Hostage Killed in Attack
BAMAKO, Mali — Jul 6, 2015, 3:37 PM ET

A Malian special forces spokesman says an Islamic extremist who was released last year in exchange for the freedom of a French hostage in Mali has been killed.

Modibo Nama Traore said Monday that French special forces killed Mohamed Ali Ag Wadossene in an early Sunday morning operation in the Tigharghar mountains in north Mali's Kidal region. A dozen others were arrested, he said.

An official with the French special forces, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not permitted to speak to the press, confirmed the operation.


Ag Wadossene was among the al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb members who kidnapped Philippe Verdon and Serge Lazarevic in northern Mali in 2011. Ag Wadossene was captured, and then released in December 2014 for the freedom of French hostage Lazarevic.

http://abcnews.go.com/International...-traded-french-hostage-killed-attack-32258396

Well done !
 
Yes; those who have survived so far have some strong external backing; Iyad Ag Ghali (Ansar Dine) is known to hide in Algeria when things get too hot for him; the Algerians of course know about it but they have not acted on him so far.
 
Yes; those who have survived so far have some strong external backing; Iyad Ag Ghali (Ansar Dine) is known to hide in Algeria when things get too hot for him; the Algerians of course know about it but they have not acted on him so far.
In his case, perhaps better the devil you know?
Given he was the focus for pulling together warring Azawad based islamists in late 2012/early 2013, away from "atomisation"* and into a thrust at Bamako which precipitated the French intervention, he has significant regional power and influence; challengers would have to deal with him first, Barkhane second.
Containment seems a pragmatic approach





*inter-factional fighting best illustrated thus: judean people's front; peoples' front of judea & splitters
 
Last edited:
Interesting figures on US support to French Ops in the Sahel:

U.S. pledges continued support for French operations in Africa
By Brian Everstine, Staff writer 1:18 p.m. EDT July 8, 2015

Defense Secretary Ash Carter this week promised continued U.S. airlift and air refueling support for French aircraft battling extremists in Mali.

French forces in January 2013 led an operation to push extremists out of areas throughout northeastern Mali and continue to fight to stabilize the region. Since the operation kicked off, U.S. Air Force crews have flown airlift and air refueling support for French forces.

"French operations there are preventing spillover of terrorism, trafficking and extremism, disrupting al-Qaida affiliates, Boko Haram and other extremists in North and West African nations, like Mali, Niger and Chad, and the U.S. military will continue to support France in these efforts with our lift and aerial refueling capabilities," Carter said in a July 6 briefing with French Minister of Defense Jean-Yves le Drian.

As of July 3, U.S. Air Force tankers assigned to the 351st Expeditionary Aerial Refueling Squadron out of Royal Air Force Mildenhall, England, had flown 638 sorties, providing 2,702 French receiver aircraft with nearly 25 million pounds of fuel since the operations began in 2013, according to U.S. African Command.

Early in the operation, five U.S .C-17s flew French forces and equipment to Mali.

"The French have been leaders in that part of Africa in a very admirable way," Carter said. "We support them, as well as supporting the governments in the region directly."

more at:

http://www.airforcetimes.com/story/...entagon-pledges-more-french-support/29824965/
 
According to Jane's IDR, the Caracal and Cougar transport helicopters of the French ALAT and AF are being up-gunned IOT better support Ops in the Sahel.

They are going to receive 15 retractable M621 Nexter 20 mm SH 20 cannons fitted with NVG-compatible DCL 120 red-dot sight and LD 15 Laser aiming devices. These systems allow the attack of a target up to 2,000 metres away and they are fitted in the starboard side of the cargo bay

Following the ALAT which has already fitted that weapon to its Cougar several years ago, the FAF is also going to integrate the FNH M3M 0.5 in. HMG to its EC 725 Mk II fleet.



SH 20
 
According to Jane's IDR, the Caracal and Cougar transport helicopters of the French ALAT and AF are being up-gunned IOT better support Ops in the Sahel.

They are going to receive 15 retractable M621 Nexter 20 mm SH 20 cannons fitted with NVG-compatible DCL 120 red-dot sight and LD 15 Laser aiming devices. These systems allow the attack of a target up to 2,000 metres away and they are fitted in the starboard side of the cargo bay

Following the ALAT which has already fitted that weapon to its Cougar several years ago, the FAF is also going to integrate the FNH M3M 0.5 in. HMG to its EC 725 Mk II fleet.



SH 20
A neat and cost-effective way to take out desert "technicals" and "cling-on cruisers" at a safe distance .
 
Field maintenance on ERC-90 Sagaie and VAB in the Madame FOB in North Niger







The Madama "DFAC" :)



Madama based units take turn to cook when fresh food is delivered



Recce and search Ops in North East Mali by Groupement Tactique Désert Ouest (GTD-O) Mistral and the Tessalit-based détachement de liaison et d’appui opérationnel (DLAO).











MEDCAP in the Menaka region of Mali



 
Some recent pics from EUTM Mali, the EU training mission tasked with the rebuilding of the Malian armed forces.

INSTRUCTION TRAINING CAMP


In Koulikoro training center, located in the Quartering Boubacar Sada Sy, are the European trainers, who since the beginning of June are imbued into two training tasks:


1. TTT « Train The Trainers » Course. The third year TTT started in late May and aims to improve knowledge of the instructors of the Malian army commanders through theoretical and practical classes.


2. Supporting EMIA (Inter Weapons Military School). Since Monday 8th, the trainers of EUTM Mali are participating in the instruction and training of the first three courses of the Academy of the Cadets Officers in Mali. Different practices are carried out always adapting to the level of preparation of students of the different courses.











NCO Course in Koulikoro

ro.In this course EUTM trainers gave some theoretical and practical classes, topography, weapons, physical training, tactical movements, also educated in, humanitarian law, ethics and leadership.

This training will continue until the end of July, the Malian NCO’s performance is very high, both students and trainers are highly motivated.







 

Latest Threads

Top