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Ekeomah Atuonwu

According to a hospital source, a bus struck an explosive device in central Mali on Thursday, leaving at least 11 persons dead and 53 injured.

Early in the afternoon, a security source reported that the explosion happened on the route in the Mopti region between Bandiagara and Goundaka. The area has a reputation for being a center of Islamist violence.

Police and local authorities earlier reported a provisional death toll of 10 and numerous serious injuries.

Nine bodies have just been transported to the clinic. They were all civilians, added Moussa Housseyni of the neighborhood Bandiagara Youth Association, “and it’s not finished yet.

Mali a landlocked country in West Africa /Courtesy/

An ongoing Islamist conflict in Mali has displaced hundreds of thousands of people from their homes and claimed thousands of lives.

Mines and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) are among the jihadists’ weapons of choice. They can explode on impact or be detonated remotely.

A report by MINUSMA, the UN mission in Mali, found that mines and IEDs had caused 72 deaths in 2022 as of August 31. Most of the victims were soldiers — but more than a quarter were civilians, it said.

Last year, 103 people were killed and 297 injured by IEDs and mines.

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Ekeomah Atuonwu

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