The Malian army has been defeated at Kidal by MNLA Touareg separatists reinforced by the AQMI coalition, once the target of the French when they intervened in January 2013, writes award winning blogger Sophie Sarin. But the French stood by while their former enemies regrouped. There are reports of northern cities Menaka and Aguelhoc also falling. 40 Malian soldiers are dead.
Thursday, May 22, 2014
France has announced that she is sending in reinforcements to Kidal: another 30 soldiers, in order to help "keep the peace". But Malians no longer trust the French and conspiracy theories are gaining ground: some think that the French are in possession of secret knowledge regarding large mineral deposits in the North of Mali in which they will have a stake when the state of AZAWAD is finally declared.
Be that as it may, the fact is that anti-French and anti-UN sentiment is running high in Mali and UN vehicles have been attacked in Bamako. The response on Malijet to the news of the arrival of the additional French forces was almost 100% negative. No one believes that France is there to help the Malian nation any longer. There were plenty of French soldiers in Kidal at the time of the attacks, the kidnappings and the massacre. They did nothing to stop the carnage. Malians feel totally betrayed.