violence Mali | 29 May 2024

Mali: Rebels accuse army and Wagner of killing civilians

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An alliance of separatist rebel groups in Mali, known as the Permanent Strategic Framework for the Defense of the People of Azawad (CSP-DPA), has accused the Malian army and Russian Wagner mercenaries of killing 11 civilians in the village of Tassik, located in the northern Kidal region (VOA News, 18 May 2024).

World Watch Research analyst Yonas Dembele comments: “Christians in Mali have been targeted by jihadists and Wagner for years. Ever since the rise of Tuareg rebels in 2012, they have faced killings, kidnappings, and the destruction of churches, leaving many displaced in IDP camps. The conflict between the CSP-DPA and Malian government re-ignited in August 2023 after the United Nations peacekeeping force (MINUSMA) was ordered to leave by the military leaders ruling in Bamako since 2020. From August 2023 onwards, there have been numerous allegations of civilian abuse by Malian forces and their Russian allies, despite official denials. Over the past years Wagner mercenaries have been repeatedly accused of serious human rights violations by global rights groups, but researchers have found it virtually impossible to investigate their operations and activities.”


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