Mali extends emergency by 10 days amid 'Islamist' attacks
Mali had originally declared a state of emergency in November and it was extended in April by three months. In the photo: Anti-government protesters gather in Mali on July 12, 2016.?
Mali extended a state of emergency for 10 days on Wednesday, the council of ministers said, after a spate of attacks by armed groups killed dozens and destabilised the country.
The council of ministers also declared a three-day period of mourning for the 17 soldiers killed in an attack by suspected Islamists on an army base on Tuesday.
Attacks resumed late on Wednesday. In one incident, suspected Islamists in six four-wheel vehicles opened fire on a military patrol vehicle in Mboukari, in the remote northern Timbuktu region of Mali, two military sources said.
In a separate attack, in the village of Gatiloumou, in central Mali's Mopti region, militants attacked and burned down the town hall, both sources said.
Mali originally declared a state of emergency in November and it was extended in April by three months.
"Despite the actions of the state, the terrorist threat persists as is evidenced by the recent attacks against the armed and security forces of Mali," the council of ministers said in a statement.
Deteriorating security risks have plunged Mali into chaos that nearly tore it to pieces three years ago, when Islamists hijacked an ethnic Tuareg rebellion, before French forces pushed them back in 2013.
Despite 11,000 UN peacekeepers deployed since the French intervention, militants still launch frequent attacks across Mali and its neighbours, including a high-profile assault on a hotel in the capital last November that killed 20 people.