French troops on Operation Barkhane 020220 CREDIT French MOD.jpg
Africa

French Military Operations Kill 30 Extremists In Africa's Sahel

France has about 4,500 soldiers in the region and will deploy 600 more.

French troops on Operation Barkhane 020220 CREDIT French MOD.jpg

Operations by French and Malian forces have killed 30 extremists in Africa’s Sahel region in recent days amid increased efforts to combat jihadist groups in the area, France's Minister of Defence Florence Parly said.

Some 20 militants were killed on Friday by one of France's first armed drones.

The strike took place in the border zone where Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso meet.

Earlier in the week, two French commando operations killed about 10 others in the border zone where extremists groups operate, including Islamic State in the Grand Sahara.

France’s Operation Barkhane force in the Sahel region worked closely with Malian forces on the operations and did not report any casualties among French or Malian troops, the French military said.

On 2 February France announced plans to deploy 600 additional soldiers to Operation Barkhane, raising the number of troops in the area to 5,100.

Most of the new personnel will be concentrated on the three-border zone, the epicentre of the fight against jihadist groups.

Operation Barkhane has been operating in the region since 2014.

French President Emmanuel Macron and the leaders of the G5 Sahel group launched a new plan last month to fight jihadists in the area.

The G5 Sahel group includes Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger and Chad.

Cover image: France will deploy 600 more troops to the region (Picture: French Ministry of Defence).