A monthlong French offensive has killed “hundreds” of Islamist fighters in Mali, the French defense minister said, as his troops prepare to start withdrawing next month.
French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian gave the number of casualties to CNN affiliate BFM on Tuesday night. He did not offer additional details.
Hours earlier, France told the local Metro newspaper that it expects to begin withdrawing its troops out of Mali in March and leave African forces in control.
Oh, I doubt that. Once you get the taste of it, it’s hard to quit.
France says it has 4,000 soldiers in Mali. Its troops are fighting alongside nearly 3,800 African soldiers, it said, a number expected to go up.
Go up? Why? Have the “I Want YOU for the Malian Army” signs had their intended effect?
French President Francois Hollande visited Timbuktu last week, just days after French forces had freed the fabled city from Islamist militants.
Now you’re just spiking the football, Francis. Your average African Islamist isn’t going to like that. I take no joy in predicting this, but a series of deadly bombs on the Paris Metro is only months, if not weeks, away.