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Vol 60 No 25

Published 19th December 2019

In search of allies

France is holding the line against the jihadis as casualties increase and hostility to its mission grows, and political backing for it shrinks

On 15 December, the heads of state of Mauritania, Chad, Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger – the members of the G5 military coalition – gathered in Niamey to mourn the deaths of 71 Nigerien soldiers killed in an attack on their forward base at Inates, on the Malian border, by jihadist commander Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahraoui's Islamic State in the Greater Sahara. It was the bloodiest attack by the jihadists in recent years and confirmed their freedom of action in the border regions of Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso.

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