UN peacekeeper killed in attack in Mali's Kidal

UN peacekeeper killed in attack in Mali's Kidal

At least three people, including a UN peacekeeper, have been killed in an attack in the northern Mali town of Kidal, according to a witness and a security source.

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Dozens of rockets and shells were fired towards a US base just outside the desert town early on Sunday, and at least one of them fell on a Tuareg camp, the witness said.

The attack in Kidal came just a day after an attack on a restaurant in the capital Bamako killed five people, including a French citizen and a Belgian security officer with the EU delegation in Mali.

Two international experts with the United Nations Mine Action Service were among the nine people wounded in the Bamako attack, according to the UN peacekeeping mission to Mali, MINUSMA.

Mali's desert north, where French forces wrested control of territory from separatist rebels and al Qaeda-linked fighters, is plagued by frequent political violence, but Saturday's attack was first in years in Bamako, in the south.

Three Malians were killed in the attack in and around Bamako's La Terrasse restaurant, which is popular with expatriates, the Malian government said, describing Saturday's attack.

Dozens of police officers secured the area, a popular nightclub among expatriates.

France has more than 3,000 soldiers in West Africa as part of a counter-insurgency force against al-Qaeda-linked fighters.

Mali's government has signed a preliminary peace proposal meant to end fighting with northern separatists, but the Tuareg-led rebels have demanded more time before agreeing to any accord.

The French embassy in Mali said on Saturday it had alerted its citizens and tightened security

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