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France says troops kill a leading jihadist in the Sahel

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PARIS (Reuters) – French troops killed one of the Sahel region’s leading jihadists on Oct. 9, France’s defence minister said on Tuesday.

Ali Maychou was the No. 2 in command of Jama’at Nusrat al-Islam wal-Muslimin (JNIM), an umbrella group for al Qaeda-linked insurgents in West Africa’s Sahara.

Violence by Islamist militants has proliferated in the sparsely-populated Sahel in recent years, with links to al Qaeda and Islamic State using central and Northern Mali as a launch pad for attacks across the largely desert region.

(Reporting by Tangi Salaun, writing by Maya Nikolaeva)

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