Friday, January 30, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Mali army pushes farthest east toward city of Gao

By
From page A2 | January 25, 2013 |

MOPTI, Mali (AP) — Mali’s military and French forces have pushed toward the Islamic extremist stronghold in the city of Gao, in their farthest push east since launching an operation two weeks ago to retake land controlled by the rebels, residents and a security official said Friday.

The soldiers were seen in the town of Hombori, according to residents, who said they stayed several hours in the area before heading back westward.

“They were in eight all-terrain vehicles and two armored vehicles,” said Maouloud Daou, a resident of Hombori. “They asked us if there were Islamists in the town and we told them they had left. People were very happy to see the Malian and French military.”

A Malian security official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to journalists, confirmed the advance.

Hombori is located 93 miles (150 kilometers) beyond the current line of control in Douentza, which came back under government forces earlier in the week. The eastward push puts them just 155 miles (250 kilometers) away from Gao, one of the three main northern cities held by Islamists since last April when the rebels took advantage of the chaotic aftermath of a coup in Mali’s capital.

Malian soldiers are attempting to recapture northern Mali from the Islamic extremists with the help of the French military and troops from other African nations.

The Islamists have retreated from several cities in central Mali following a barrage of French air strikes, but the extremists still control the north including Gao, Kidal and Timbuktu.

The French currently have some 2,400 forces in the country and have said that they will stay as long as needed in Mali, a former French colony. However, they have called for African nations to take the lead in fortifying the Malian army’s efforts.

There are currently some 1,750 troops from countries in the region, including Togo, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Benin, Senegal, Niger and Chad.

The Malian army, however, has been accused of committing retaliatory violence against civilians who appear to be northerners or those with suspected links to Islamists.

A French-based human rights group — the International Federation for Human Rights, or FIDH by its French acronym, charges that Malian forces have been behind about 33 killings since fighting erupted on Jan. 10.

Malian Army Capt. Modibo Traore called the allegations “completely false” but declined to comment further. A government statement issued Thursday called on the military to respect human rights, saying “the army should be irreproachable.”

Human rights groups have long expressed concerns about retaliatory violence against northern Malians or anyone seen as having ties to the Islamists whose capture of the north has divided the country in two.

Meanwhile, the West African regional bloc known as ECOWAS said it was organizing an emergency session of defense chiefs from the 15 countries that make up the group. The gathering on Saturday will be held in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

————

By Baba Ahmed. Associated Press writer Krista Larson in Mopti, Mali contributed to this report.

Comments

comments

The Associated Press

.

News

Suspected Ebola patient being treated at UCD Med Center

By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A1

 
Town hall focuses on Coordinated Care Initiative

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1

Schools give parents tools to help kids thrive

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Need a new best friend?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Stanford University to get $50 million to produce vaccines

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Two more cases of measles in Northern California in children

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Dartmouth bans hard liquor

By New York Times News Service | From Page: A2

 
All voices welcome at sing-along Wednesday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Great Chefs Program will feature Mulvaney

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

 
Walkers head out three times weekly

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3Comments are off for this post

Free tax preparation service begins Monday

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

 
Vote for your favorites in Readers’ Choice poll

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

No bare bottoms, thanks to CommuniCare’s Diaper Drive

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Storyteller relies on nature as his subject on Saturday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Still time to purchase tickets for DHS Cabaret

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
February science fun set at Explorit

By Lisa Justice | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Take a photo tour of Cuba at Flyway Nights talk

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

See wigeons, curlews and meadowlarks at city wetlands

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8 | Gallery

 
.

Forum

Time for bed … with Grandma

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
We’re grateful for bingo proceeds

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10

 
A ‘new deal’ for the WPA building

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

 
Protect root zone to save trees

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

Weigh quality of life, density

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
Olive expert joins St. James event

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

.

Sports

UCD has another tough football schedule in 2015

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
Gould’s influence felt mightily in recent Super Bowls

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

Mustangs hold off UCD women

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
UCD men set new school D-I era win record

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Sharks double up Ducks

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Sports briefs: Watney, Woods start slow at TPC Scottsdale

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

Recall that first Aggie TV game, national title?

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B8 | Gallery

 
.

Features

.

Arts

‘Song of the Sea’ is an enchanting fable

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11 | Gallery

 
‘Artist’s Connection’ launches on DCTV

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

 
Gross’ paintings highlight a slice of Northern California

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

February show at YoloArts’ Gallery 625 is ‘Food for Thought’

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12 | Gallery

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Comics: Friday, January 30, 2015

By Creator | From Page: A9