Armed group kill dozens in chaotic Mali

Mali Armed groupFrom RUDD KONTE in Bamako, Mali
BAMAKO ,(CAJ News) –VIOLENCE by armed groups, fueled by explosive ethnic tensions, sweeping across central Mali has left 52 people dead and 10 000 displaced since the beginning of the year.
The spate of killings is the aftermath of some Islamist armed groups over the past two years progressively increasing their presence in the region, where they have executed civilians and government officials and committed other abuses.
Their presence, and recruitment of local residents, has inflamed and exploited tensions among the Peuhl, Bambara, and Dogon ethnic groups, spawning the growth of often-abusive self-defense militias.
In some of the most gruesome terror by the militants, in February, armed Islamists executed nine Bozo and Bambara traders returning home from a local market for their perceived support of the Dozos, the self-defense militia.
Since then, at least 16 people – both civilians and armed group members – have been killed in an escalating series of tit-for-tat attacks.
Peuhl and Bambara are terrified by the large groups of armed men often seen driving around on motorcycles and vehicles and gunning down people in the villages.
Villagers, local officials, and elders from both ethnicities said poverty, corruption, inadequate security, and the lack of investigations and justice for communal violence and criminality were fueling recruitment of youth into the armed groups.
Security forces have reportedly reacted with brutality with at least eight suspected Islamists executed and others forcibly disappeared.
Human rights activist, Corinne Dufka, said authorities should investigate and prosecute all those responsible for the deadly violence.
“The Malian government should ramp up efforts to stop this violence.”
CAJ News

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Posted by on Apr 6 2017. Filed under Africa & World, Featured, National, News, Regional. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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