Three killed by French fire on 'suspect vehicle' in north Mali
Paris, June 12, 2019 (AFP) - Three people were killed in northern Mali when
French counter-terror forces fired on a vehicle after the driver failed to
halt for an inspection, the French military said Wednesday.
The incident took place on Saturday west of Timbuktu, one of three northern
Malian towns that were recaptured from jihadists by French and Malian forces
in 2013 but which is still periodically attacked by Islamist radicals.
"A unit of the Barkhane force was confronted with a suspect vehicle that
refused to submit to an inspection," said a statement from the chief of
staff's spokesman in Paris, referring to the 4,500-strong French mission
helping Mali and surrounding countries fight jihadists.
"After several warning shots by the French soldiers, which the vehicle
failed to obey, a shot was fired to stop the vehicle which was heading towards
the French troops," the statement said.
The vehicle, which was carrying a "large" quantity of fuel burst into
flames, killing a teenager and two adults who were inside.
An investigation into the incident was under way, it said.
Six years after the successful rout of three extremist groups that had
seized Mali's desert north, the jihadist threat continues to plague one of the
world's poorest nations and has also spread to several other countries in West