5 killed in jihadi attack on Mali resort outside capital

June 19, 2017 | By | Reply More

Islamic extremists who stormed a resort area in Mali popular with foreigners killed five people, including a Portuguese soldier who had been serving in the European Union mission to stabilize this West African country wracked by mounting extremism, authorities said Monday.

mali resortEU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said the Malian victim worked for the European delegation in Bamako.

The attack struck a resort area that was considered safe enough that it was an approved rest and recreation location for soldiers with the EU mission. It was not immediately clear how the attackers managed to overpower the security staff and shoot at guests.

Mali’s special forces arrived on the scene not long after the reports of gunfire erupting from Campement Kangaba, known for its three swimming pools and serene surroundings as an escape from the bustling capital’s heat and traffic.

Initially the country’s security minister said one of the wounded attackers had managed to escape but on Monday officials said they had accounted for all the jihadists.

Witnesses described a chaotic scene Sunday afternoon, with one man saying the first jihadist on the scene arrived by motorcycle shouting “Allah Akbar.” Three others subsequently arrived in a vehicle and began firing their weapons.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which took place amid the final week of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. However, the attack resembled a number of others carried out by the local affiliate of al-Qaida in West Africa over the past two years.

Sunday’s violence also came about a week after the U.S. State Department warned of possible attacks on Western diplomatic missions and other locations in Bamako that Westerners frequent.

In recent years, the extremists have become more brazen, attacking sites frequented by Westerners in the capital of Bamako.

In March 2015, five people died when militants hit a popular restaurant in the capital. A devastating attack on the Radisson Blu Hotel in Bamako later that year left 20 dead — six Malians and 14 foreigners.

Press journalist for HRO media – Ignacio Damigo reports.

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Category: International

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