French soldier dies in attack on anti-insurgent base in Mali

23 January 2022, 13:14

France Mali Soldier Killed
France Mali Soldier Killed. Picture: PA

President Emmanuel Macron saluted the soldier’s service and reiterated ‘France’s determination to continue the fight against terrorism in the region’

A French soldier has been killed in a mortar shelling attack on a base in Mali.

The 24-year-old artilleryman, Alexandre Martin, was serving with France’s anti-insurgent force Operation Barkhane, according to a statement from the French army.

Several rounds targeted the military camp in Gao, an army statement said. Martin was seriously wounded and later died. Nine other soldiers were slightly injured.

Helicopters were deployed to “neutralise the terrorists who fired the shots”.

France Macron
France’s President Emmanuel Macron saluted the soldier’s service (Ludovic Marin/AP)

In a statement, French President Emmanuel Macron saluted the soldier’s service and reiterated “France’s determination to continue the fight against terrorism in the region, alongside its partners”.

French troops have been present in Mali since 2013, when they intervened to force Islamic extremist rebels from power in towns across the country’s north.

Operation Serval was later replaced by Barkhane and was expanded to include other countries in an effort to help stabilise Africa’s broader Sahel region.

The French force has been operating in Mali, Chad, Niger, Burkina Faso and Mauritania. France has previously announced plans to reduce the force from 5,000 troops to 2,500-3,000 soldiers over the long term.

By Press Association

Latest World News

See more Latest World News

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Turkey’s Erdogan still against Finnish and Swedish Nato bids

A mountain range near Pokhara, Nepal

Plane with 22 on board missing in Nepal’s mountains

Pope Francis delivers a prayer from a window overlooking St Peter's Square

Pope names 21 new cardinals

Protesters clash with security forces in Khartoum

UN envoy decries Sudan violence after two killed in protests

Russia Ukraine War

Russian troops storm city amid eastern Ukraine bombardments

Meghan Markle is thought to have reached out to her estranged father

Meghan Markle 'has reached out to father' days after he suffered stroke and lost speech

Young Jewish people wave Israeli flags near the Western Wall in Jerusalem

Visit to holy site by far-right Israeli politician sparks Jerusalem unrest

Shoppers in a reopened mall in Beijing

Beijing and Shanghai ease Covid restrictions as outbreaks fade

Presidential candidate Gustavo Petro

Colombians to vote for president amid widespread discontent

Rescuers look out of the windows of a helicopter

25 missing after cargo boat sinks in Indonesia

Nigeria Church Stampede

31 dead in church fair stampede in Nigeria

Russia Ukraine War

Russia takes small cities as it aims to widen battle in east Ukraine

Iran accused of piracy for seizing two Greek oil tankers

Fears oil price will rise again after Iran accused of piracy for seizing Greek oil tankers

Building Collapse-Florida

Judge in US gives initial OK to a billion-dollar deal in Florida condo collapse

Cardinal Angelo Sodano

Powerful Vatican prelate Cardinal Angelo Sodano dies aged 94

Donald Trump

Senior Republicans’ claims at NRA rally called into question