African Press Association

155 peacekeepers killed in Mali insurgency

UN peacekeepers funeral

from RUDD KONTE in Bamako, Mali
BAMAKO – REBEL groups have killed more than 150 United Nations (UN) peacekeepers in conflict-torn Mali since deployment in 2013.

This makes the West African country the most dangerous for peace operations in the organisation’s history.

Chadian members of the peacekeeping force called the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), have paid the heaviest price. At least 155 peacekeepers have been killed.

By the end of 2017, out of the 57 deaths of Chadian servicemen and police in the service of the UN, 47 have occurred in Mali since 2013.

According to the latest report of the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, on Mali, the security situation has deteriorated and attacks against MINUSMA and the Malian defense and security forces have increased and intensified.

Several insurgent groups fighting the government in a campaign for independence or greater autonomy for northern Mali are blamed for the attacks.

Jean-Pierre Lacroix, UN Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, said despite the increasing attacks, the mission in Mali continues to work tirelessly to help bring peace to the country.

“In the true spirit of the United Nations Charter, Chad is committed to providing protection to people living in conflict situations,” he added.

With about 15 000 personnel, MINUSMA is the third largest UN peacekeeping force in operation in the world.

About 11, 0000 peacekeepers from more than 120 countries serve in 15 peacekeeping operations globally.

– APA / CAJ News