WASHINGTON — A suspected Malian Islamist extremist killed himself without hurting or killing any others. The Associated Press reports that he went to an abandoned house and detonated his explosive vest.
The house was close to the residence of Iyad Ag Ghali, a leader of the ousted Islamist group Ansar Dine, which is affiliated with the international terrorist network al-Qaeda. The man committed suicide at about 11 a.m. local time in the city of Kidal, located in the northern region of the country.
No one could identify the bomber as his remains were scattered by the blast.
French forces pushed out Ansar Dine and other Islamist groups this past January and have since planned their withdrawal. Their replacements, an African group under United Nations mandate, has stepped in. However, with the withdrawal of Chadian troops, the future of the mission is in doubt. Chad specializes in desert warfare, which is where the remaining Islamist forces are holed up along the Mali-Algeria border.
Algeria had a foreigner hostage crisis at an oil facility soon after the French pushed back the Islamist elements from Mali, where Algerian security forces killed all but 3 Islamist hostage-taker with 37 hostages dead.