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article imageTop al Qaeda commander killed in Mali on Saturday

By Larry Clifton     Mar 2, 2013 in Politics
A report published Saturday afternoon claims Chad soldiers killed a senior commander for al Qaeda’s north African forces.
Mokhtar Belmokhtar was killed Saturday during a raid on an Islamist rebel base in Mali, according to Chad military sources.
Chadian military operating in northern Mali destroyed a terrorist base and killed several terrorists, according to a report by Chadian armed forces spokesman General Zacharia Gobongue in a statement read on national television.
However French soldiers conducting operations with Chadian troops this week are a sign that the French military intervention against the jihadists in Mali, first viewed as a quick strike, will not end soon.
Meanwhile, on Friday Chadian president Idriss Déby Itno said through his communications director that Abu Zeid, the most important commander in Al Qaeda’s regional commanders, was also recently killed in combat.
Among Malian and other troops there are reportedly around 1,200 French soldiers operating in the region along with 800 Chadian soldiers. Troops are focused on a 15-mile zone in the Adrar des Ifoghas, the rocky, barren mountains at Mali’s Algerian border, according to Col. Thierry Burkhard, French military spokesman.
Hundreds of al Qaeda fighters remain holed up in the rugged mountainous terrain.
More about Mokhtar Belmokhtar, chad mali, french chad mali, General Zacharia Gobongue, French intervention Mali
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