A senior Ansar Dine (“defenders of Islam”), an Islamist group that has held for months northern Mali and committed many abuses, was arrested near the Algerian border.
“Mohamed Moussa Ag Muhammad, the number three Ansar Eddine, who ordered to cut off the hands, was arrested by an armed group. He was taken to Kidal,” announced a Malian security source. The information was confirmed by an official at the governorate of Kidal, Abdoulaye Toure. “It was the ideologue of Ansar Dine in Timbuktu, the brains of the organization there. Was arrested at In Hallil, near the Algerian border by an armed group allied. It is en route to Kidal “said Abdoulaye Toure, without further details.
The sources did not specify who had arrested Mohamed Moussa. Tuareg separatist National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) claimed his capture and that of Oume? Nor Ould Baba Akhmed, the Movement for the uniqueness and Jihad in West Africa (Mujao).
Presented by the inhabitants of Timbuktu as a native of the region Touareg, it has been described as the head of the “Islamic policy” a reign of terror, according to testimony gathered in recent days in this city located 900 km from Bamako.
STRENGTHENING THE QUOTA to KIDAL
Kidal, 1 500 km from Bamako, has long been the bastion of Ansar Eddine. But even before the arrival on the night of January 29 to 30 of French soldiers? Ais who took embroidered with the airport in the city, it was passed under the embroidered on the Islamic Movement of Azawad (MIA, a splinter group of Ansar Eddine) and MNLA.
Both groups said they supported the entry of French soldiers? Ais Kidal, but refuse the presence of Malian and West African troops, including fear of abuse against members of the Arab and Tuareg communities in the city, sometimes equated with Islamist armed groups. A small contingent of Chadian soldiers (whose country is not part of West Africa) is also deployed in Kidal.
According to Malian military sources, fighting also opposed Saturday of French soldiers? Ais Malian men and the Islamist group Ansar Dine around Kidal. Of attack helicopters and transport aircraft fran? Ais carrying special forces left Gao to strengthen the contingent of France and Chad parked at the airport of Kidal.
SUPPORT UNITED STATES
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, who will be received Monday in Paris by Fran? Ois Hollande, reiterated the support of his country’s military operation in Mali. “There was no hesitation on our part. We share the goals of the international community to deny terrorists safe havens and to restore democratic governance in Mali, he said in an interview with Le Figaro on Monday. In Regarding the military operation conducted by France, the United States has provided significant support – including information exchange, air transport and aerial refueling – the President Holland and other warmly welcomed. ”
“It is also important that we work to help the participating countries to establish quickly the African Mission Support (Misma.) The United States also contribute to this effort significantly, thanks to the air transport and logistical support to Forces arriving in Bamako, “adds Joe Biden.
EUROPE: CAN DO BETTER
Former French Prime Minister? Ais Alain Jupp?? (UMP) on Sunday called for the deployment, “very, very quickly,” the military training of the Malian army approved in mid-January by the European Union. “Europe could [...] to move a little bit”, he launched at the “Grand Rendez-vous” of the string of television I> T??l?? about this European mission called EUTM ( European advisory and training) designed to train and reorganize the Malian army before let go: “In the case of Mali, Europe was no point!”
EUTM should be operational from mid-February, and the first Malian soldiers should begin their training “in late March, early April” on the military base Coulicoro, about 200 km from Bamako. This mission, of which France is the “framework nation” and which should include a dozen European countries, will deploy some 450 Europeans 200 instructors and 250 people for the protection and administrative support.
POSSIBLE WITHDRAWAL OF TROOPS FRAN? AISES OF TOMBOUCTOU
Fran ais a military withdrawal? Timbuktu in Mali “can come very quickly,” said Monday on France Inter, the Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius. “In the city we want, we would be quickly relayed by African forces Misma” the inter-African force authorized by the UN, he said. About seven French hostages? Ais reportedly detained around Kidal in the massive Ifoghas Laurent Fabius assured that the government continues to act with “determination and discretion.”
RESUME WITH FRAN? AISE
France will gradually resume its ODA Mali, frozen since the military coup of 22 March 2012, announced Monday the Minister for Development, Pascal Canfin. “The ODA will resume within a European framework,” he insisted. “At first, it is to take the 150 million that had been frozen after the coup” that ousted President Amadou Toumani Toure, he said, stressing that the EU also decided to resume aid to the amount previously announced 500 million euros. “The resumption of aid will be gradual, backed roadmap. Disbursements in humanitarian funding and development will be based on the progress of the road,” he insisted.
Malian Parliament adopted late January a ‘roadmap’ for political post-war in northern Mali, which provides a discussion with some armed groups and the establishment of a “national reconciliation commission”. It also provides for the holding of “elections, transparent and credible” that the Malian Interim President Traore wished to see organized before July 31.
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