In a military operation yesterday, the French reportedly killed a top Tuareg commander for the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara in Mali’s northern Menaka region.
The weekend clashes are the latest in a series of skirmishes and inter-communal killings between the two Tuareg militias and the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara.
French special forces took part in a large-scale joint operation with Malian and Nigerien troops, alongside Tuareg militias, against militants of the so-called Islamic State in the Greater Sahara on April 1.
The recent battle comes less two weeks after the Tuareg militias last clashed with militants from the so-called Islamic State in the Greater Sahara.
With at least 257 al Qaeda-linked attacks in Mali and its neighboring countries, this represents a significant uptick in the al Qaeda-led insurgency in northern Mali in recent years.