Mali: National Liberation Movement of Azawad (MNLA) and Ansar Dine clashed, created new group Patriots’ Resistance Movement for the Liberation of Timbuktu against secession of Azawad
Mali’s Tuareg rebels clashed overnight with their former religious allies, witnesses said Friday, after the two groups fell out over forming a breakaway state in the northern desert region they control.
The clash involving automatic weapons near the remote regional capital Kidal was the first between the rebel National Liberation Movement of Azawad (MNLA) and Ansar Dine. Both groups are made up of Tuareg tribesmen from different various clans and the fighting has raised fears of widening chaos in the vast northern swathe of the country.
The rebel forces seized the region with little resistance from Malian government forces seizing the initiative after officers in the southern capital Bamako seized power in a March 22 coup.