The French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has said the goal of France’s military action in Mali is to retake the entire country.
Mali, a former French colony, is battling an Islamist insurgency that has seized control of the north.
The French army has taken control of the airport in the central town of Sevare and brought in reinforcements.
As they await the arrival of more West African military support, French and Malian troops are gathered in the central town of Niono.
Euronews correspondent François Chignac reports from there:
“We are on a night patrol north of Niono with a special unit guiding the French aircraft carrying out strikes. The French launched air strikes a week ago. They have carried out more yesterday and today, and tomorrow will bring more.”