Mali forces arrest 15 militants, destroy camps
Army forces in Mali have arrested over a dozen militants and demolished two camps belonging to militant groups in operations near the southern border with Ivory Coast, sources say.
Some 15 militants were apprehended and their sanctuary in the region of Sikasso near the border with Ivory Coast was destroyed, a military officer told AFP on Tuesday.
In a raid on another camp near the frontier town of Fakola, the army managed to seize arms, explosives and motorbikes from militants, a different military source said. The camp was subsequently destroyed.
Last week, Malian troops killed several militants in Sikasso, and destroyed their camp in a nearby forest.
Mali has been the scene of violence since Tuareg rebels took control of northern Mali, which they call Azawad, in January 2012.
The West African country slid further into chaos after President Amadou Toumani Toure was toppled in a military coup in March 2012. The coup leaders said the move was in response to the government’s inability to contain a rebellion by Tuareg people.
Militant attacks in Mali are commonly focused in the desert areas in the north; however, raids have crept further south in recent months.