Mali: Heavily armed child soldiers fighting in Mali conflict –

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Mali: Heavily armed child soldiers fighting in Mali conflict –

Malian child soldiers are fighting in the country’s conflict, journalists on the ground have reported. While French troops have boasted of the successful retaking of northern Mali from Islamist fighters, sectarian violence is worsening. The three-week-long intervention has created havoc and misery, reporter Gonzalo Wancha said, adding that the scars of the conflict will likely last a lifetime.

“The war became a real nightmare for the Malians,” Wancha told RT. “The French intervention left a pile of debris and ashes, but that’s just the visible traces of the war they left.”

Reporters have witnessed scores of armed children fighting in Mali. Local resident Mohamed Kandanku, shared his story of losing his brother to the armed youth:

“My brother was attacked by a group of militants,” Kandanku said. “There were children among them. He started running and got back into our house. But they followed him. One of the children fired at him, but missed. And then another insurgent shot him inside the house. My brother fell and was riddled with bullets. We laid his body in the house. We couldn’t bury him, because we were afraid to go outside.”

In Diabali, Wancha described how the majority of the military forces were heavily armed child soldiers, which does not surprise the locals or the Malian army.

Reporters have also found evidence of war crimes committed by Malian troops. In the town of Sevare, the military allegedly killed civilians and dumped their bodies into a drinking water well; the bodies are still there……/257578-Heavily-armed-child-soldiers-fighting…

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