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10 United Nations peacekeepers slain in Mali attack

Gunmen killed 10 Chadian peacekeepers and injured at least 25 others in an attack on a UN camp in northern Mali on Sunday, one of the deadliest strikes against the UN mission in the West African country.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres strongly condemned what he described as a “complex attack” on the camp in Aguelhok, in Kidal region and called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice

“Ten peacekeepers from Chad were killed and at least 25 injured,” said a statement from UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric. The gunmen struck early Sunday at the Aguelhok base 200 kilometres north of Kidal and towards the border with Algeria, according to a source close to the MINUSMA mission.

“MINUSMA forces responded robustly and a number of assailants were killed,” Dujarric said, without specifying the toll. Mahamat Saleh Annadif, the UN envoy for Mali, condemned what he called a “vile and criminal” attack.

“Peacekeepers of the MINUSMA force at Aguelhok fought off a sophisticated attack by assailants who arrived on several armed vehicles,” he said in a statement. The attack “illustrates the determination of the terrorists to sow chaos.

“It demands a robust, immediate and concerted response from all forces to destroy the peril of terrorism in the Sahel.”

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