There have been no claims of responsibility for the attack, but Islamic extremists linked to al-Qaida and the Islamic State group have staged regular attacks on UN peacekeepers and soldiers.
One of the 28 UN peacekeepers wounded in an attack on a temporary United Nations base in central Mali has died from his injuries, the United Nations announced Friday.
Mali remains the deadliest of the UN’s 12 far-flung peacekeeping missions and the peacekeeper from Togo was the sixth killed just since January in hostile acts in which 46 peacekeepers were also injured.
UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric, who announced the peacekeeper’s death, extended the UN’s “deepest condolences” to his family and the people and government of Togo and wished a speedy recovery to the 27 other peacekeepers, also from Togo.
The UN has condemned Wednesday’s “complex” attack using direct and indirect fire against the temporary base in Kerena, near Douentza. There have been no claims of responsibility for the attack, but Islamic extremists linked to al-Qaida and the Islamic State group have staged regular attacks on UN peacekeepers and soldiers.
Dujarric said the Kerena base “was set up recently to better protect the local population, bring back calm in areas impacted by intercommunal violence, as well as to reduce the threat of improvised explosive devices.” Mali has been in turmoil since a 2012 uprising prompted mutinous soldiers to overthrow the president. The power vacuum that resulted ultimately led to an Islamic insurgency and a French-led war that ousted the jihadists from power in 2013.
But insurgents remain active and extremist groups affiliated with al-Qaida and the Islamic State group have moved from the arid north to more populated central Mali since 2015, stoking animosity and violence between ethnic groups in the region.
The country has also been plagued by a series of coups, the latest in August that overthrew President Ibrahim Boubacar.