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14 countries set for US-led military exercises in Mali

by Staff Writers
Bamako (AFP) Aug 21, 2007
Members of the military from the United States and 13 African and European countries were to take part in joint exercises Wednesday as part of an anti-terrorism programme, military sources here said.

Some 350 people will participate in the "Flintlock 2007" exercises, which were initiated by the United States and will continue until September 8, they said.

The exercises will take place in the Malian capital of Bamako, mainly on computers, where simulations will be conducted.

They aim to improve command, control and communication systems for humanitarian, peacekeeping and rescue operations, Mali's defence ministry said in a statement.

"The training will allow participating countries to develop a partnership in the region, while reinforcing military capabilities."

Algeria, Chad, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Tunisia, Mali, Burkina Faso, France, the Netherlands and Britain were taking part.

The US embassy in Bamako said the exercises were part of a US programme called the "Trans-Sahara Counter-Terrorism Partnership".

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Thousands homeless following Burkina Faso floods
Banh, Burkina Faso (AFP) Aug 16, 2007
Thousands of people were homeless and more than a dozen villages remained under water on Thursday in northern Burkina Faso following heavy rains, officials said.

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