bye bye Barkhane

Mali: Wagner, G5, France… Who is on the front line fighting jihadists?

By Marie Toulemonde

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Posted on October 12, 2021 06:05


As France has begun to reduce its military presence in Mali, we look the data, and map out the different forces at work against the jihadists. These include the G5 Sahel, the Takuba task force and maybe even Russian mercenaries Wagner.

“France is not leaving Mali,” said Florence Parly, France’s minister of the armed forces, after her meeting in Bamako with Colonel Sadio Camara, her Malian counterpart, on 20 September. The minister – who embarked on a mini-tour of the Sahel that also took her to Niger, a country that is set to become the cornerstone of French military strategy in the region when the ‘tactical redeployment’ of Operation Barkhane becomes fully effective – knows that the current situation is particularly tense.

Although information regarding the details of the ongoing operations is trickling out, the partial French withdrawal has already begun. Paris promises to remain present – but with reduced numbers – and continue its strategy of targeted strikes against jihadist leaders, such as the “neutralisation” of Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, the leader of the Islamic State in the Great Sahara (ISGS). President

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