French forces say they have entered the northern Malian town of Kidal after taking over the airport.
There are no signs of Islamists and two different groups say they are talking with the French.
Kidal is the last urban bastion that had been in Islamist hands. The Islamic Movement of Azawad (IMA), a breakaway group from the Islamist Ansar Dine movement, says it rejects terrorism and claims to hold the town with Tuareg rebels.
The secular National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA), which backs the rights of Mali’s Tuareg minority, also claims to have held talks with the French.
Both groups do not want to see Malian troops in Kidal, fearing reprisals against Arab and Tuareg communities.
The Islamist militants are thought to have taken refuge in the northern mountains.
In Timbuktu, recently liberated by French and Malian forces, most precious Islamic manuscripts that had been feared destroyed are now thought to have been saved. They were reportedly hidden from Islamists before their arrival, or had been taken to the capital Bamako.
People in Timbuktu have been making their most of their new re-found freedom after suffering Islamist repression, some singing and dancing in the streets.
“Normal life can begin again, life as we knew it before, with art and our traditional music,” smiled one woman.
A man walzed as he sang a song he said he had written as a tribute to French President François Hollande.
The Islamists not only banned music, they also destoyed telecommunications equipment, supposedly because people could hear music on their mobiles.
But although shops are open and are again freely selling phones and other goods, tensions remain.
On Tuesday in Timbuktu hundreds of people, described as visibly poor, attacked stores whose owners they accused of being “Arabs”, “Algerians” or “Mauritanians” who had supported the Islamists.
Copyright © 2014 euronewsMore about:
- 1Further gunfire, but also war of words over crisis in Ukraine
- 2Kenya government vows to hunt down al-Shabaab bus attack killers
- 3Rival warnings echo growing US-Russia gulf over Ukraine
- 4Recording of Philae probe landing on Comet 67P released
- 5Irony as organised crime prosecutor arrested for corruption in Romania
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2Sweden becomes first EU country to recognise the Palestinian State | euronews, world news
- 3Italy swamped by flash floods | euronews, world news
- 4Back to School for Romania’s new First Lady | euronews, world news
- 5What will you ask US Senator John McCain? | euronews, world news
- 6Turkish president Erdogan unveils his new palace of a thousand rooms | euronews, world news
- 7India PM Modi appoints Yoga minister | euronews, world news
- 8Vladimir Putin most powerful man in the world – Forbes | euronews, world news
- 9[Live] Rosetta’s Philae lands on comet 67P and enters the history books | euronews, world news
- 10European e-revolution people rise up | euronews, world news
- 11International tv news | euronews: European and International tv news bulletin
- 12Where is the best place in Europe for women? | euronews, world news
- 13Obama’s ‘risky’ immigration gamble | euronews, world news
- 14Nadia Comaneci: gymnast of perfection and defector | euronews, the global conversation
- 15Putin plans to leave G20 talks early amid Ukraine pressure | euronews, world news
- 16Transcript of hanged Iranian woman’s final message released | euronews, world news
- 17US says ISIL makes $1 million-a-day selling oil – even to enemies | euronews, world news
- 18Syria: Islamic extremists pledge to press ahead with battle for Kobani | euronews, world news
- 19Edgars Rinkevics: “I am gay. Good luck all of you.” | euronews, world news
- 20International news | euronews, latest international news
Wires > News
- 14:44 CET Israeli forces kill Palestinian along Gazan border – Palestinian…
- 14:35 CET Iraqi forces battle Islamic State in towns north of Baghdad
- 14:29 CET Tunisians vote for first freely elected president
- 14:28 CET Fighters from Syrian al Qaeda wing close in on Shi’ite village -…
- 14:14 CET Over 25 killed in attack on Nigerian fishing community
- 14:08 CET Putin says Russia not isolated over Ukraine, blames West for…
- 13:43 CET Journalists remember 32 colleagues slain in the Philippines
- 13:11 CET U.N. worker leaves French hospital after Ebola recovery