In Mali, Russian security forces seen in Gao, after the withdrawal of the French army German peacekeepers observed on Monday August 15 the presence of dozens of members of the Russian security forces at the airport of Gao, in the north of Mali, even as the French army completed its withdrawal from the country, according to a document drafted by the command of the German federal defense force seen by Reuters.
German and British soldiers belonging to the United Nations peacekeeping force (Minusma) noticed the presence of two planes at Gao airport, including an L-39 Albatros. “Two hours later, 20 or 30 people dressed in non-Malian army uniforms were seen unloading equipment from a Malian aircraft,” the document said.
“They were most certainly members of the Russian security forces, the L-39 having presumably been flown by Russian soldiers, the Malian forces not being able to do so,” it added.
France announced on Monday that it had completed the withdrawal of its troops from Mali with the departure from the country of the last French soldiers of “Barkhane”, a military operation aimed at fighting in the Sahel against Islamist movements.