NAIROBI, June 1, 2016 (Xinhua) -- File photo taken on Oct. 28, 2015 shows an entrance of theUnited NationsMultidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) camp in Gao. The camp was attacked on May 31, 2016, which may have caused "serious damages", according to local residents in the city. Up to now, no official reports of the attack or casualties have been confirmed. (Xinhua/Pan Siwei)
BAMAKO, June 1 (Xinhua) -- Two separate attacks on United Nations (UN) targets in Mali's city of Gao killed four people and injured more than a dozen Tuesday, adding more casualties to the deadliest active deployment for UN peacekeepers, the organization has said.
TWO ATTACKS ON ONE DAY
The first attack occurred at approximately 20:45 p.m. local time (2045 GMT) on Tuesday, targeting the camp of a convoy UN peacekeeping mission in the West African country, Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA).
In the attack, a UN peacekeeper was killed by rockets and mortars, and more than 10 people were wounded, according to a statement from the convoy of the MINUSMA.
The MINUSMA added that three people were severely injured, while more than 10 members of MINUSMA including civilians were lightly wounded and have received the necessary medical care.
The statement also said that part of container houses were destroyed during the attack and property damage is under evaluation.
The UN convoy has dispatched helicopters to carry out air guarding and a rapid reaction force to patrol the city.
China's Embassy in Mali confirmed on Wednesday that a Chinese peacekeeper was killed in the attack on the camp and four other Chinese peacekeepers were injured, while China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the same day strongly condemned the attack on the UN peacekeepers.
The second attack on a UN de-mining unit killed two Malian security guards and an international expert, the MINUSMA said in the same statement, without revealing the nationality of the expert.
In a latest development, the North African branch of the al-Qaida claimed responsibility for the latest attack in Gao on social media, according to SITE Intelligence Group, a monitoring firm, on Wednesday.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said China has urged the Mali government and the United Nations to investigate the attack and bring the perpetrators to justice.8 "This is a grave and intolerable crime. China strongly condemns it," she told a daily news briefing, describing the incident as a terrorist attack on the UN peacekeeping mission.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said attacks targeting peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law, calling for swift action to bring the perpetrators of this crime to justice.
DEADLIEST PEACEKEEPING MISSION
Since its inception in 2013, the UN mission in Mali has already lost more than 60 lives so far, making it the UN's deadliest active mission. The last month alone has seen three attacks on members of the mission.
A recent attack in central Mali killed five Togolese peacekeepers on Sunday, who were traveling in the Mopti region when their vehicle came under fire before hitting a landmine.
In 2012, Mali was thrown into chaos when several insurgent groups in the north began a war against the Malian government for independence.
The landlocked country suffered from further conflicts and bloodshed when President Amadou Toumani Toure was ousted in a coup over his handling of the crisis.
The MINUSMA was established in 2013 to support the country's reconciliation between the north and south and carry out security-related tasks. However, with many armed groups active in the country, the security situation in the country is still grave.
UNITED NATIONS, June 1 (Xinhua) -- The UN Security Council on Wednesday "condemned in the strongest terms" a terrorist attack on Tuesday against the camp of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) in Gao, North Mali, during which one Chinese peacekeeper was killed.
"The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest condolences and sympathy to the family of the victim, as well as to the government of the People's Republic of China and to MINUSMA," the 15-nation UN body said in a statement issued to the press here. "They paid tribute to the peacekeepers who risk their lives." Full story