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More than 100 people murdered in Mali massacre

Mali has witnessed numerous massacres [Getty-file photo]

Date of publication: 23 March, 2019

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More than 100 people have been murdered by hunters in Mali.
More than 100 people have been murdered in Mali, after hunters attacked a village on Saturday, the UN have said.

The massacre too place in a Fulani village in central Mali, when Dogon hunters killed at least 115 people, officials said.

"The new toll is 115 dead" in the village of Ogossagou, said Cheick Harouna Sankare, mayor of neighbouring Ouenkoro. "It is a massacre of Fulani civilians by traditional Dogon hunters."

Around 50 people were reported dead initially, but with a number of victims missing, according to officials.

The victims were shot or hacked to death with machetes, AFP reported, until Malian troops and armed locals arrived at the site in the afternoon. They gave a toll of at least 105, a security source added.

Boubacar Kane, the governor of Bankass district, which covers Ogossagou, said the "provisional toll" was 115.

The attack began at dawn on Saturday in a village that lies close to the border with Burkina Faso and has been the scene of frequent inter-communal violence.

Hunters had burned down nearly all the huts in the village, according to AFP.

A delegation from the United Nations Security Council visited the Sahel region to assess the jihadi threat, when the massacre took place.

Tensions have centred on locals grazing cattle on Dogon land and disputes over access to land and water, the area is also troubled by jihadi influence.

A group led by radical Islamist preacher Amadou Koufa has recruited mainly from the Muslim Fulani community, which has led to repeated clashes between the nomadic Fulani herders and the Dogon ethnic group.

Last year that violence cost the lives of 500 civilians, according to UN figures.

In January, Dogon hunters were blamed for the killing of 37 people in another Fulani village, Koulogon, in the same region.

The Fulani have repeatedly called for more protection from the authorities. The government in Bamako has denied their accusations it turns a blind eye to - or even encourages - Dogon attacks on the Fulani.

Mali in recent years has been dogged by a coup, civil war and extremist groups linked to Al-Qaeda, who took control of the desert north in early 2012.

They were largely driven out in a French-led military operation launched in January 2013 but remain an active threat in rural areas.

Despite the presence of UN peacekeepers, a strong French military contingent and a five-nation anti-jihadi military force, militant groups still operate.

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