(NewsReady.com) – Islamic extremists have carried out attacks all over West Africa in recent years. In 2015, Mali was the location of a deadly hotel siege that killed several people. Most recently, multiple suicide bombings rocked the country.
On Saturday, April 22, three suicide bombings hit Sévaré, Mali. Yacouba Maiga, a spokesperson for the regional governor, told Reuters that at least nine people died and over 60 suffered injuries. The attacks happened early in the morning, but videos online show the streets were bustling. At least 20 buildings were destroyed in the blast.
At least nine killed in triple suicide bombing in central Mali https://t.co/LccoILeIaP pic.twitter.com/7rc5CFmSn5
— Reuters Africa (@ReutersAfrica) April 22, 2023
The government released a statement saying the military had used a drone to destroy three vehicles that were filled with explosives. It’s not clear whether this was the blast that killed the civilians or if it was a separate incident.
Resident Ousmane Diallo spoke to the Associated Press and said people were on their way to morning prayers when they heard a loud explosion and gunfire. “It was total confusion,” he recalled.
The explosions happened near a military base that houses Russian mercenaries with the Wagner Group. The paramilitary force has been fighting alongside the Malian army since unrest began in 2022.
So far, nobody has claimed credit for the attack, but Islamic extremists are known for operating in the region. The blasts came days after three people died in an ambush in another part of the country. The terrorist group JNIM, which has links to al-Qaeda, claimed responsibility for that attack.
In another incident, the government also reported an air force helicopter crashed in a residential neighborhood in the country. Six civilians were hurt in that accident and three military members lost their lives. Additionally, the military reportedly took out a terrorist compound, and 60 terrorists died.
Residents in the area of the attacks on Saturday were asked to give blood to the local hospital so doctors could save the lives of the injured.
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