Chad blue helmet dies after jihadist attack in Mali
February 15 2019 06:48 PM
An armoured personnel carrier of The United Nations mission in Mali (MINUSMA) in Timbuktu on Septemb
Some 15,000 peacekeepers are deployed in Mali as part of MINUSMA, and 177 have been killed, according to the UN.


A soldier from Chad has died after he was wounded in a jihadist attack on peacekeepers in northeast Mali last month, bringing the toll of the assault to 11, the UN said Friday.
In the deadliest strike to date against the UN mission in Mali, MINUSMA, gunmen attacked the Aguelhok base in the Kidal region killing 10 peacekeepers and injuring at least 25 others.
Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) claimed responsibility for the attack it said was "in reaction" to a visit to Chad by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
"A blue helmet from Chad died of his injuries following the attacks against MINUSMA at Aguelhok on January 20," the mission announced on Twitter.
The Malian army said Thursday it had conducted a raid in the central Mopti region with the French Barkhane anti-insurgent force and freed two hostages.
Alassane Dembele and Sheik Oumar Ouattara, employees of non-governmental group Care Mali, were abducted by jihadists several months ago, a military source told AFP.
Mali's defence ministry said in a statement the raid also "neutralised more than a dozen terrorists".
Some 15,000 peacekeepers are deployed in Mali as part of MINUSMA, and 177 have been killed, according to the UN.
The mission was established after Islamist militias seized the north of the country in 2012. They were pushed back by French troops in 2013.
A peace agreement signed in 2015 by the Bamako government and armed groups was aimed at restoring stability to Mali.
But the accord has failed to stop violence by Islamist militants, who have also staged attacks in neighbouring Burkina Faso and Niger.
MINUSMA is the UN's most costly ongoing peacekeeping operation in terms of lives lost, accounting for more than half of blue helmets killed globally in the past five years.
The Chadian contingent has been particularly hard hit, with 54 deaths, Mali's President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita said last month at a ceremony paying homage to the Aguelhok victims.

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