The Imghad and Allies Self Defense Movement (GATIA) and the Movement for the Salvation of Azawad (MSA) have again reported its fighters have battled with militants loyal to the Islamic State led by Abu Walid al Sahrawi.
According to the joint statement released by the groups, one of their joint patrols engaged in combat with the Islamic State-loyal militants in the Tinzouragan area of Mali’s northern Gao region yesterday. The locale sits close to In-Delimane and the Nigerien borders, an area where the so-called Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS) operates. The Tuareg alliance reported that five jihadists were killed, including a high level commander named as Djibo Hamma. Other militants and vehicles were reported captured.
At the same time, France’s Operation Barkhane reported its forces also clashed with suspected jihadist militants near In-Delimane on March 6. It is unclear which group the French troops battled with. While ISGS operates in that area, al Qaeda’s Group for Support of Islam and Muslims have claimed attacks on French troops in that area as well.