Nearly 100 killed, 19 missing in central Mali village massacre
SEE ALSO :The unseen war - Part 2"Armed men, suspected to be terrorists, launched a murderous attack on this peaceful village," it said in a statement. A Malian security source at the site of the massacre said "a Dogon village has been virtually wiped out."
SEE ALSO :Kenya shuts border with Somalia in LamuIn the bloodiest raid, about 160 Fulani villagers were slaughtered on March 23 at Ogossagou, near the border with Burkina Faso, by suspected Dogon hunters. According to MINUSMA, armed Fulanis had "caused 63 deaths" among civilians in the Mopti region, also since January 2018. "It's a shock, a tragedy," MINUSMA chief Mahamat Saleh Annadif said of the latest bloodletting, noting that it came at a time "when we are discussing the renewal of the (MINUSMA) mandate." There are currently about 14,700 troops and police deployed in Mali, which ranks as the most dangerous UN mission, with 125 peacekeepers killed in attacks since deployment in 2013. Donor countries to MINUSMA are to meet at the UN on Wednesday. A decision on renewing the force's mandate is expected by June 27. - UN warning - Speaking at the UN headquarters in New York, Annadif voiced regret that the Malian authorities had not been present enough in the area to prevent such violence. Just a week earlier, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres had warned of a "high risk" of atrocities and called on the government to strengthen its response to extremist groups. "If these concerns are not addressed, there is a high risk of further escalation that could lead to the commission of atrocity crimes," he wrote in a report to the UN Security Council. On Monday, Guterres' spokesman said the secretary general was "outraged" by the massacre and that he called "on the Malian authorities to investigate this tragedy and to bring the perpetrators to justice." Amnesty International echoed the demand, saying the UN Security Council should renew MINUSMA's mandate. The Malian government meanwhile expressed its condolences and said "every measure will be taken to arrest and punish those responsible for this bloodshed." "Reinforcements are currently deployed in the sector and carrying out a wide-ranging search," it said in a statement. MINUSMA was established after French troops in 2013 pushed back radical Islamists who seized the north of the country following an uprising by Tuareg rebels. A peace agreement signed in 2015 by the Bamako government and armed groups aimed at restoring stability. But the accord failed to stop jihadist violence, which then shifted to central Mali, inflaming ancient inter-ethnic hostility. Koufa in March 2017 joined the newly-formed Group to Support Islam and Muslims (GSIM), the leading jihadist alliance in the Sahel region, with links to Al-Qaeda. Its leader is Iyad Ag Ghaly.
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