First fighting for the french soldiers in Gao against Islamist rebels infiltrated in the city 110213

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Defence News - Mali

 
 
Monday, February 11, 2013, 08:55 AM
 
First fighting for the french soldiers in Gao against Islamist rebels infiltrated in the city.
Black-robed Islamist rebels armed with AK-47 assault rifles infiltrated Gao in wooden boats, Sunday, February 10, 2013, to launch a surprise attack on the most populous city in northern Mali, two weeks after French and Malian troops ousted the jihadists.
     
Black-robed Islamist rebels armed with AK-47 assault rifles infiltrated Gao in wooden boats, Sunday, February 10, 2013, to launch a surprise attack on the most populous city in northern Mali, two weeks after French and Malian troops ousted the jihadists.
French soldiers secure the evacuation of foreigners during exchanges of fire with jihadists in Gao, northern Mali, Sunday, Feb. 10, 2013
     

The attackers used canoes to cross the Niger River to penetrate Gao, according to French General Bernard Barera, who cited Malian officials.

The combat started at about 2:00pm local time (14:00 GMT) in Gao's commercial hub and the fighting was continuing as night fell.

Rocket-propelled grenade explosions and fire from heavy machine guns and light weapons could be heard in Gao late in the afternoon.

The soldiers of the French army have backed the Malian troops to fight Islamist rebels infiltrated in the city of Gao, it's the first real fightings for the French armed forces deployed in Mali. A French attack helicopter Tigre was used to provide support for the troops deployed on the ground.

The attack in Gao shows the Islamic fighters, many of them well-armed and with combat experience. The latest incident came a month into the French campaign to chase Islamist fighters out of the north of the country where they had imposed a brutal form of Sharia law for 10 months.

     
Video Fighting for the French and Malian soldiers against Islamist rebels infiltrated in Gao.
 

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