Get out of Mali or we’ll attack again, terrorists tell France

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The extremist group behind the hostage crisis in Algeria has threatened more attacks against foreign targets if France does not bring an immediate halt to its military operation in Mali.

In a statement, the Masked Brigade, led by Moktar Belmoktar, warned of more such attacks against any country backing France’s military intervention in Mali. “We promise all the countries that participated in the Crusader campaign … that we will carry out more operations if they do not reverse their decision,” it said.

France began its military offensive in Mali on 11 January and has said that African nations must take the lead in the action, though it could be some weeks before they are ready to do so.

France said that some 400 troops from Nigeria, Togo and Benin had arrived on Sunday in the Malian capital Bamako to help train an African force for the country.