US Orders Personnel to Depart from Mali Over Security Concerns

Following heightened risk of terrorist attacks, the United States has ordered non-emergency personnel and their families to leave Mali.

There was no specific threat mentioned to its employees, it however said there are concerns of escalating violence affecting foreigners in a country that has been troubled by insurgent attacks for years.

“On 29 July 2022, the department ordered the departure of non-emergency US government employees and family members due to the heightened risk of terrorist attacks in areas frequented by Westerners,” the State Department said in an updated travel advisory on Mali.

“Terrorist and armed groups continue plotting kidnappings and attacks in Mali,” the advisory said, warning of attacks on places including “night clubs, hotels, restaurants, places of worship (and) international diplomatic missions.”

In 2012,terrorists first struck the north of Mali joining forces with a raging regional uprising.

Having being dispersed the following year by foreign forces, they regrouped. By 2015, they launched attacks in the ethnically volatile center of Mali, as well as cross-border raids into Niger and Burkina Faso.

Earlier this month, Mali’s army said it had foiled an attack on a military camp in the capital of the country, just days after a deadly suicide bombing at a strategic garrison town near the capital.

It was the first time since 2012 that such coordinated attacks had taken place so close to Bamako.

Mali is being run by a military government since August 2020, when colonels angered at failures to defeat the insurgents toppled the country’s elected president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.

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