WorldHeadlineTop NewsTrending News

Two members of the Red Cross employees were abducted in Mali

Saturday saw the abduction of two International Committee of the Red Cross employees in northern Mali, the organisation said. This is the most recent kidnapping in the unstable West African nation.

Mali has been in the midst of a political and security crisis since 2012, when jihadist and separatist insurgencies broke out in the country’s northern regions.

Central Mali and the neighbouring countries of Niger and Burkina Faso have been hit by an uptick in attacks by jihadists with ties to Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State.

More than two million people have left their homes as a result of the violence in the area, which has claimed the lives of thousands of civilians, police, and soldiers.

Two ICRC employees were abducted between Gao and Kidal in the country’s north this morning, the organisation said.

The ICRC, which has been in the nation for 32 years, reaffirmed that it is “neutral, independent and impartial”, and urged that no assumptions be made regarding the event “so as not to delay its settlement”.

“The ICRC deplores (the event) and demands the release of its partners,” Aminata Alassane, a public relations officer with the ICRC, told AFP.

Martin Schuepp, the agency’s newly appointed head of operations, visited Mali last year and reported back that “violence is pervasive” there, making safety concerns for the team a top priority.

“Despite it all, we’re doing all we can to reach individuals in need, even in the remotest corners of the nation,”

Disappointing Security

The Prime Minister of Mali, Choguel Kokalla Maiga, was forced to cut short a visit to the north in February owing to rising insecurity.

France withdrew its anti-jihadist forces from Mali last year after being driven out by the country’s ruling junta.

The junta, realising it could not rely on French soldiers, has instead recruited the Russian Wagner group to bolster regime forces.

According to the European Union, Wagner’s men in Mali “have been implicated in acts of violence and various human rights violations, including extrajudicial murders,” therefore they were sanctioned last month.

For many reasons, including ransom demands and acts of retribution, kidnappings have grown commonplace in areas where government authority is weak.

A physician working for the World Health Organization was liberated in February after being kidnapped in Mali in late January.

During the month of May, four people were taken hostage in the south-east of the country; three Italians and a Togolese national.

The unrest in Mali has expanded to the neighbouring countries of Burkina Faso and Niger.

An American nun was abducted by terrorists in Burkina Faso in April and freed in August.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker