Six Malian soldiers were killed and nine wounded earlier this week in an ambush on a Malian army detachment near Bamako in the west of the country, AFP learned Wednesday from police sources and a local elected official.
The soldiers were ambushed on Monday in this area near the town of Badala, near Kita, some 130 km from the capital, the police source told AFP without specifying the nature of the attack and the identity of the assailants.
The death toll of six soldiers and nine wounded was confirmed to AFP by a local politician who said the attack was carried out by "terrorists", a term used in Mali to designate jihadists.
The attack had not been claimed on Wednesday evening.
The soldiers' response left "several dead" among the attackers, the same police source added, without giving further details.
Mali has been plagued since 2012 by the spread of jihadism and a deep multidimensional political, economic and humanitarian crisis.
The colonels who came to power in a putsch in 2020 and were consolidated by a second coup in 2021 have broken with the former French ally and its partners, and have turned militarily and politically to the Russians.
Meanwhile, at least two Russian soldiers and a civilian were killed Tuesday night by an accidental grenade explosion in a bar in central Mali where they were drinking, local sources said.
On Tuesday night, "there was an accident at the Tam-Tam bar in Segou. A Russian instructor mishandled a grenade and there was an explosion. Two Russians were killed. There was also a dead civilian," a police official in the city told AFP.
The information was confirmed by a local elected official. He said two Malian soldiers were also dead.
"Some soldiers came into the bar. They ordered alcohol. They also had some in their pockets. We heard noise towards the Malian and Russian soldiers. There were at least three dead, including two Russians. A civilian also died," said one witness.