Mali: France announces the capture of a senior executive of the Islamic State group in the Greater Sahara

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French soldier from Operation Barkhane, in Gossi, April 17, 2022. © REUTERS - PAUL LORGERIE

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As the Barkhane force continues its redeployment outside Mali, the French general staff announces the capture of one of the leaders of the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (EIGS).

Oumeya Ould Albakaye was taken prisoner on the night of Saturday June 12 to Sunday June 13 near the border between Mali and Niger.


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He was a very active leader who organized several attacks against various military bases in Mali, including that of Gao.

He directed networks implementing improvised explosive devices that aimed indiscriminately at military or civilian targets.

In this case, it directly targeted the axes of circulation which are borrowed by the Barkhane force within the framework of its rearticulation outside Mali.

This is an additional guarantee that the conditions for carrying out a rearticulation outside Mali in good order, in safety, will be met.

But it should be noted that the EIGS has been hit hard by the Barkhane force for several years now.

And I recall in particular that the most emblematic fact is still the neutralization of the head of the EIGS by Barkhane, Abou Walid al-Sahraoui, in August 2021.

General Pascal Ianni, Spokesman for the General Staff

Frank Alexander

The general staff of the armies specifies that Oumeya Ould Albakaye will, like all those arrested by Barkhane in Mali, be handed over to the Malian authorities.


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  • mali

  • France

  • Terrorism

  • IS