West & Central Africa Correspondent, Dakar
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Feb 19, 2013

Nigerian “terrorists” nab French tourists in Cameroon: Hollande

DAKAR/ATHENS (Reuters) – Gunmen kidnapped seven French nationals, including three children, on Tuesday in northern Cameroon near the border with Nigeria and the perpetrators came from neighboring Nigeria, French President Francois Hollande said.

The risk of attacks on French nationals and interests in Africa has risen since France sent forces into Mali last month to help oust Islamist rebels occupying the country’s north.

Feb 13, 2013

AngloGold Ashanti holds off on Mali mine’s expansion

DAKAR, Feb 13 (Reuters) – AngloGold Ashanti is to
hold off on a $500 million expansion plan for its Sadiola joint
venture mine in western Mali until the security situation
becomes clearer, a company executive said on Wednesday.

Richard Duffy, executive vice-president of continental
Africa, said the world’s third-largest gold producer was simply
waiting on developments in the French-led war to oust Islamist
rebels from the country’s northern desert.

Feb 12, 2013

Sonatel’s regional market dominance helps lift 2012 profit

DAKAR, Feb 12 (Reuters) – Senegalese telecommunications
group Sonatel SA reported stronger full-year net
profit on Tuesday, using its dominant market position to fight
mounting competition from other West African providers, analysts

Sonatel’s EBITDA profit met market expectations with a 3.7
percent rise to 347 billion CFA francs ($707.75 million) while
net profit jumped 11 percent to 171 billion CFA vs 154 billion
in 2011, the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

Jan 22, 2013

Chad troops move toward Niger’s Mali border to face Islamists

NIAMEY/BAMAKO (Reuters) – An armored column of Chadian troops in Niger moved towards the Malian border on Tuesday, part of an African military force that is gradually deploying to support French operations against Islamist rebels in northern Mali.

A Reuters reporter witnessed the Chadian forces, who are experienced in desert operations, advancing north from the capital Niamey on the road to Ouallam, some 100 km (60 miles) from the border, where a company of Niger’s troops are already stationed.

Jan 22, 2013

French troops take central Mali towns, rebels slip away

DIABALY, Mali (Reuters) – French and Malian armored columns rolled into the towns of Diabaly and Douentza in central Mali on Monday after the al Qaeda-linked rebels who had seized them fled into the bush to avoid air strikes.

France said the advance was a significant step in its campaign to break Islamist fighters’ grip over Mali’s vast desert north, a presence raising fears of the region becoming a an African launchpad for international militant attacks.

Jan 21, 2013

French troops take town in central Mali as rebels slip away

DIABALY, Mali (Reuters) – French and Malian armoured columns rolled into the central Mali town of Diabaly on Monday after the al Qaeda-linked Islamist rebels who seized it a week ago melted into the bush to avoid air strikes.

Diabaly, 350 km (220 miles) north of Mali’s dusty riverside capital Bamako, had harboured the main cluster of insurgents south of the frontline towns of Mopti and Sevare.

Jan 21, 2013

French troops advance in Mali as Islamists melt away

NIONO, Mali (Reuters) – French troops advanced cautiously toward northern Mali on Sunday amid fears of ambush by al Qaeda-linked fighters, while its fighter jets pounded the Islamists’ strongholds in the desert near Timbuktu.

In the central Malian town of Diabaly, seized by Islamist fighters on Monday, the wreckage of the Islamists’ charred pick-up trucks lay abandoned among the mud-brick buildings, television images showed.

Jan 20, 2013

French troops inch north in Mali as Islamists melt away

NIONO, Mali (Reuters) – French troops in armored vehicles advanced on Sunday towards a central Malian town abandoned by Islamist rebels after days of air strikes, moving cautiously for fear of guerrilla-style counterattacks by the al Qaeda-linked fighters.

Television showed the wreckage of the Islamists’ white pick-up trucks, some mounted with heavy machine guns, lying charred and twisted among the mud-brick buildings of the village of Diabaly.

Jan 20, 2013

France, Africa seeks support for regional Mali force

ABIDJAN/NIONO, Mali (Reuters) – France and West African leaders called on Saturday on other world powers to commit money and logistical support for African armies readying their troops to join French soldiers already battling al Qaeda-linked militants in Mali.

The appeal came as African leaders met in Ivory Coast to hammer out details of a regional mission that is due to take over from French forces but is dispatching soldiers while still short of financing, planning and even ammunition.

Jan 19, 2013

French troops bring relief, business to central Mali town

SARAKALA, Mali (Reuters) – Early this week, Koura Coulibaly was ready to pack her bags and abandon Sarakala, a small village in central Mali.

Three days into an offensive by French war planes and attack helicopters, Islamist rebels launched a dramatic counter-attack, seizing the town of Diabaly town from Mali’s army, about 100 km (60 miles) away.

    • About Bate

      "Bate Felix is a Dakar-based West & Central Africa Correspondent. He joined Reuters in 2007 as a graduate trainee and has worked in Johannesburg, London, Brussels, Paris and Amsterdam. He now covers economics, politics and general news stories in over a dozen countries in West & Central Africa."
      Joined Reuters:
      English, French
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