At least 22 UN peacekeepers have been injured in northern Mali after their convoy was hit by two improved explosive devices (IEDs) as they continued their withdrawal from the country amid deteriorating security. The sixth incident since the peacekeepers left their base in northern Kidal on October 31 has resulted in at least 39 peacekeepers injured. The UN spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, said that the injured were evacuated by air for medical treatment in Gao. Eight peacekeepers were injured and evacuated on November 1 and a further seven last Friday due to IEDs.
In June, Mali’s military rulers ordered the nearly 15,000-strong peacekeeping force, known as MINUSMA, to leave. The anticipated completion date for the pullout is December 31, even with the ongoing crisis in the West African nation. The third and last MINUSMA camp to be evacuated from the Kidal region was the Kidal camp, which housed around 850 troops and 150 other mission staff. The UN Security Council created the peacekeeping mission in 2013, and at first it assisted in bringing some serenity to the northern regions.