French strikes hit key Mali town held by Islamists
BAMAKO, Mali — Fighting erupted between Islamists and Malian soldiers in the city whose capture by militants first prompted French military intervention, while French forces kept up their bombardments of another key town, fleeing residents said Thursday.
Mali soldiers claimed to have recaptured the central town of Konna, although this could not be confirmed, while the French continued airstrikes on the Islamist-held town of Diabaly, at least 200 kilometers (125 miles) away.
Residents who escaped Diabaly said French bombs continued to hit Islamist positions there overnight but they said the town remained under the control of the radical Islamists who have advanced south after controlling northern Mali for nearly a year.
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