Malian Army Conducts Drone Strikes Against Tuareg Rebels in Kidal

Between the evenings of June 4th and 5th, the Malian army (FAMA) conducted several drone strikes in the north of the country, targeting an ex-MINUSMA base, which is currently occupied by Tuareg rebels part of the recently established Permanent Strategic Framework for the Defense of the People of Azawad (CSP-DPA).

What You Need to Know:

Based on information obtained by WAMAPs conflict analysis, the drones were sent from a temporary drone base established by FAMA near the village of Anefis. The temporary drone base has enabled FAMA to conduct strikes on areas in Mali’s far north, in an attempt to drive out the Tuareg rebels as well as Islamic militants.

The Details:

Currently, it is unknown if there are any injuries or casualties as a result of the strikes.

The Malian junta, which took power through a military coup in 2021, announced in January of this year its termination of the 2015 Algiers Peace Accord, which essentially ended the governments conflict with the Tuareg rebels.

As a result of the Accords termination, the nation’s Tuaregs reorganized under Bilal Ag Acherif’s CSP-DPA. Acherif served as the Secretary-General of the Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) in the early 2010’s, when the group made major gains against the Malian government.

The introduction of Russia’s Wagner Group into the country in December 2021 has enabled the Malian army to make significant gains against the rebels, although at the cost of the civilian population, who are often caught in the crossfire.

So, What Now?:

This latest development signals an escalation of Mali’s conflict against the Tuaregs, who are likely to retaliate in the near future. While the Malian army has the additional help of Wagner Group, they are still fighting a conflict against multiple actors, which is likely to spread their personnel thin; particularly if the Tuaregs and Islamic militants launch a joint offensive as they did in 2012.

Furthermore, an escalation of the conflict is likely to push displaced civilians to seek refuge in neighboring nations. Currently, Malian refugees constitute one fifth of the population of Mauritania’s Hodh Ech Chargui region.

Bianca Bridger
Bianca Bridger
Bianca Bridger is a Political Science Graduate from the University of Otago, New Zealand. Currently working as an Editor for The ModernInsurgent and writing for Atlas News, her interests include conflict politics, history, yoga and meditation.

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