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Terrorism Stretches from France to Mali
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Mali bombings

Malian security officers evacuate a hostage from the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako yesterday (AP)

A week after the Paris attacks which ISIS claimed responsibility for and resulted in the death of 130 people in addition to the death of most of the 8 perpetrators, similar attacks were repeated in Mali’s capital Bamako when gunmen stormed a hotel and held captive tens of hostages in it.

Gunmen raided the Radisson Blu hotel in the capital of Mali and took 170 people hostage. After nine hours from the beginning of the attack carried out by the gunmen using machine guns, Malian special forces assisted by French and American forces burst into the hotel. A security source said that he removed 18 corpses from the hotel whilst a Malian military source stated that two of the attackers had been killed. An official at the UN, meanwhile, spoke of 27 corpses, and the Al-Mourabitoun group affiliated with al-Qaida and led by Algerian Mokhtar Belmokhtar claimed responsibility for the attack.

Saudi Arabia condemned the terrorist attack and an official source at the Saudi Ministry of Interior emphasised his country’s firm stance against terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.

Regarding the attacks carried out in Paris the Friday before last, a police source informed Reuters news agency that the police tracked Hasna Ait Boulahcen’s phone and followed her whilst she was taking Abdelhamid Abaaoud, suspected of being the mastermind of the attacks, to a building in the Saint Denis suburb of northern Paris. A French security official yesterday confirmed to Agence France-Presse (AFP) that Hasna Ait Boulahcen did not blow herself up and that it was not her who detonated an explosive belt in the early hours of Wednesday morning during a police raid on the building as was previously reported. In fact, the suicide bomber was a man.

Furthermore, a security source in Morocco said yesterday that Moroccan authorities arrested Yasin Abaaoud, the younger brother of the mastermind of the Paris attacks upon his arrival in Agadir, the town of his father, last month.

On the other hand, the French President Francois Hollande received King Muhammad VI of Morocco at the Élysée Palace yesterday. The French President expressed his thanks to the King of Morocco for the effective assistance that Rabat extended to Paris following the attacks that took place on the Friday before last.

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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