army helicopter fires ‘near’ British peacekeepers

A Malian army helicopter recently fired several missiles.nearof British peacekeepers, the British authorities said on Tuesday, April 12, an exceptional incident that raises questions about the future of the UN mission in that country

We are aware of a recent incident in Mali where missiles were fired by a Malian Forces helicopter near a British detachmentA spokesman for the Ministry of Defense said in a message to AFP.All UK personnel are safe and the circumstances of the incident are being investigated“, he added. The facts took place near Tessit, near Gao, in the east of the country.”A few weeks ago, British peacekeepers came under fire and the incident is under investigationUN spokesman Stéphane Dujarric confirmed in New York in response to questions during his daily press conference.

This is an event that took place on March 22nd“he added, speaking”shots fired by a Malian Forces helicopter in the Tessit area, near a Minusma detachmentThere were no injuries, the peacekeepers were safe in all respects‘ he assured. Asked about the possible involvement of paramilitaries of the Russian Wagner Company in this event, the spokesman said he did not know. Asked if this was the first such incident between blue helmets and Malian troops, he said he couldn’t say.

“air access”

Bamako denies any presence of mercenaries of the Wagner group on its territory, acknowledging only the help of “Russian instructorsin application of a bilateral cooperation agreement dating back to the year 1960 and still ongoing. Last week, US Deputy Ambassador to the UN Richard Mills, without citing the UK, denounced an incident “unacceptable“happened on March 22 where a Malian helicopter had”fired six rockets near peacekeepers in eastern Mali

According to a diplomat who wishes to remain anonymous, Wagner paramilitaries along with the Malian army could be involved in the incident. The Malian army has been accused of the massacre of hundreds of civilians in Moura (center) in late March with the participation of alleged Wagner mercenaries. Bamako denied this massacre and claimed to have neutralized jihadists. The Malian authorities have announced the opening of an investigation. Russia congratulated Bamako late last week on his operation to neutralize jihadists in Moura.

On Tuesday, Stéphane Dujarric said the UN investigation into the events in Moura is continuing. †The investigation must continue on site to establish the facts. In this regard, a Minusma team is pre-deployed in Mopti and ready“to go to Moura as soon as the Malian authorities give it”air access to the areathe spokesman said. The mandate of the Minusma mission, which includes some 14,000 soldiers and police officers, expires in June. Several troop-contributing countries are evaluating their participation in the light of the latest developments in Mali. The end of French and European operations will rob the peacekeepers of precious air and medical aid and the UN is studying ways to minimize this.

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