A car bomb explosion has killed dozens of people and injured many others in a military camp in northern Mali. The explosives planted in the vehicle were detonated at the camp in the northern city of Gao on Wednesday. The army says at least 37 people were killed.
The camp houses Malian soldiers and members of various rival armed groups, who fight in line with the United Nations (UN)’s peacekeeping force, known as MINUSMA, to quell violence in the region.
The UN’s peacekeeping force, which has more than 11,000 military and police personnel from various countries throughout the vast Sahel region, has lost more than 30 peacekeepers over the last year.
Human Rights Watch accused the government on Wednesday of failing to protect its people in its northern and central regions from terrorists. Rights groups say terrorists force Malian families to give up their children to them.
The group described in its new report the way militants have occupied villages and attacked UN peacekeepers. Mali’s Security Minister Salif Traore declined to respond to the report, but said he is well aware of security challenges in the country, which has been witnessing violence in its northern regions since 2012. Since 2013, French forces have been present in the country in a declared mission against militancy.