08:47 GMT13 July 2020
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    The deadly incident rocked the Sokolo military camp in the centre of the country, a military source told AFP.

    20 soldiers were killed in an attack on Malian security forces on Sunday in the centre of the West African country, Reuters reported, citing the government.

    AFP previously reported that 15 were killed in the attack by jihadists. There were also reports of five injured.

    The agency quoted a local lawmaker as saying that the Sokolo military camp was overrun by heavily-armed terrorists on motorcycles. According to the lawmaker, the assault was planned as it seemed that "the attackers knew what they were doing". The source added that the jihadists had taken all the camp’s military equipment.

    The attacked camp is situated in the central Segou region infested with al-Qaeda*-linked jihadist groups.

    Earlier this week, seven Malian soldiers were killed and several more injured in an ambush and assault, while two French servicemen were wounded by a roadside bomb in central Mali.

    The African country has been struggling to cope with an Islamist insurgency that has plagued it and the larger Sahel area since 2012.

    Large swathes of the Sahel are no longer controlled by the police and the army of local governments, adding to the surge of radicalisation in the region.

    *al-Qaeda, a terrorist group banned in Russia and a number of other countries

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