Timbuktu airport has been seized and secured by French and Malian troops. Backed by airpower around 1200 soldiers have now launched an offensive to take the city.
A senior military officer reported they met no resistance at the airport though they uncovered a series of improvised explosive devices. One unnamed member said they were laid by people who knew what they were doing.
“The whole device was set up cleanly, the connections were done correctly, the whole system was ready to work. It was an expert job, it was not the work of amateurs, that’s clear,” he said.
The advance into the ancient city has prompted French President Francois Hollande to tell a news conference on Monday, “we are winning this battle”. His words come with reports Islamists fleeing Timbuktu set fire to homes and thousands of priceless manuscripts.
There are claims from the secular Tuareg rebel commanders they are now in control of the northern town of Kidal after Islamist militant fighters abandoned it.
Kidal is the capital of a remote region which borders Algeria. It was one of the last suburban strongholds of the militants.
Human Rights Watch has raised concerns that members of the Malian military may be settling old scores during their offensive. Images have been released showing dead bodies at the bottom of a well.
African and international leaders will meet on Tuesday in Addis Ababa for a donors conference.
Meanwhile British Foreign Secretary William Hague has said the UK would not be sending combat troops to Mali.
- 1‘Human error responsible’ for deadly Bad Aibling train crash – sources
- 2Two commuter trains collide head-on in Germany
- 3Leopard enters Indian school, mauls six people
- 4Refugees in Hungary offered classes to speed integration
- 5New migrant tragedy claims 27 lives as Greece grapples with refugee crisis
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2International news | euronews, latest international news
- 3Madrid to appeal Catalan road to independence from Spain
- 4Hope vs harsh reality: challenges to global education goals in the 21st century
- 5Partnering to grow Europe
- 6Extras : euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 7Turkey: Explosion hits Istanbul’s main tourist district
- 8Thousands in Bucharest blame corruption for Friday’s nightclub blaze
- 9Jorge Lorenzo clinches his third MotoGP title in Valencia
- 10Macedonian Postcards: The Mavrovo National Park
- 11Moldova: protesters storm Parliament
- 12Paris: “I would rather see my brother in prison than in a cemetery”
- 13Special Reports : euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 14Benzema questioned in French sex tape case
- 15Merroussis clinches the 33rd Athens Authentic Marathon
- 16latest Learning World - All Programmes | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 17Norway sends Syrian refugees back to Russia
- 18Brussels remains on high alert: ‘multiple operations underway’ across Belgium
- 19Business news and finance news | euronews: international economic and finance news
- 20International breaking news | euronews online world breaking news in video
Wires > News
- 09:21 CET Iran to upgrade missiles, get Russian defence system – minister
- 09:11 CET Indonesian president may include new parties in next cabinet…
- 08:39 CET Tajiks to vote in referendum on giving president unlimited terms
- 07:58 CET Rapidly ageing Thailand tells businesses to hire more elderly
- 06:50 CET Trump, Sanders ride U.S. anti-establishment tide to New Hampshire…
- 06:25 CET Exclusive – U.S., India consider joint patrols in South China Sea…
- 05:22 CET Kidnapped journalist found dead in central Mexico
- 05:04 CET Libya must lead anti-Islamic State effort, Egypt’s foreign…