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Chief: Islamic extremists holding about 30 ethnic Dogon males hostage after bus raid

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A group chief in central Mali says that suspected Islamic extremists are holding about 30 males hostage after an assault on a number of buses earlier this week

ByBABA AHMED Related Press

November 10, 2023, 12:50 PM

BAMAKO, Mali — Suspected Islamic extremists are holding about 30 males from the Dogon ethnic group hostage after ambushing a number of public transport buses in central Mali earlier this week, a group chief stated Friday.

Bocar Guindo stated that armed males initially kidnapped about 40 individuals who had been touring Tuesday between Koro and Bankass. The ladies aboard, although, have been later launched, he stated.

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Whereas there was no rapid declare of duty, suspicion instantly fell on Islamic extremists who’ve been working within the space for years and are identified to focus on public transport.

Their rising presence has heightened communal tensions, with members of the Peuhl ethnic group being accused of collaborating with them. Dogon communities, in the meantime, have been focused for allegedly supporting the Malian military’s counterinsurgency efforts.

The same assault befell in 2021, when armed males figuring out themselves as jihadis took dozens of individuals hostage in the identical a part of central Mali. The hostages have been launched solely after their households paid ransoms.

Mali’s Islamic insurgency started spreading into the central a part of the nation after a French-led army operation ousted jihadis from energy in main cities throughout the north in 2013.

Safety issues have solely grown since a 2020 coup deposed Mali’s democratically elected president. The military colonel who seized energy, Assimi Goita, has sought to distance the nation from its one-time worldwide companions.

Final yr, French troops left Mali after practically a decade of serving to combat exremists within the former colony. And now U.N. peacekeepers are within the means of departing on the request of the Malian junta-led authorities.

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