New clashes with AQIM reported in Sahel states

Mauritanian security forces repelled a militant attack on an army base located in the southeastern town of Bassiknou near the border with Mali, authorities said July 6. The attack was reportedly carried out by militants of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). The Mauritanian military claimed the militants were pushed across the border into Mali, and that its troops had killed at least 10 of the attackers and captured several other. The incident follows a joint Mauritania-Mali military operation that killed at least 15 presumed AQIM fighters in the Wagadou forest region of western Mali on June 24. Two soldiers were also killed in the joint offensive, in which an AQIM base was reportedly overrun. (RTT News, July 6; Reuters, June 25)

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