BY JIM KOURI
Islamists in France on Saturday warned the French government that it risks the security of its citizens “wherever they find themselves in the Muslim world” after supporting military intervention in the Muslim terrorist attack on the African country of Mali, according to an Israeli counterterrorism expert who monitors Islamic terrorism in North Africa.
According to an earlier report, a French hostage was executed in Somalia on Saturday and eight others are believed to be captives of al-Qaeda-linked cells.
Meanwhile in the second day of fighting in Mali, French helicopter pilot was killed when he was shot down near the central Mali town of Mopti, Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said in a press conference on Saturday.
France has deployed its special forces (French Foreign Legion) into Mopti to prepare the way for hundreds of troops to protect the capital from terrorists.
The battle to retake Mali’s north from the al-Qaeda-linked groups controlling it began in earnest Saturday, after hundreds of French forces deployed to the country began aerial bombardments to drive back the Islamic terrorists attempting to overthrow the fledgling Mali government.
In addition, the French government is deploying additional Rafale fighter jets to set the stage for a major offensive against the Islamists, according to the defense minister.
A second defense meeting is scheduled for Sunday at the Elysee Palace to discuss the recent developments of French-backed military intervention in Mali and the situation in Somalia, where a French hostage was reportedly killed in a rescue operation.
More than 100 people, including Islamists and government troops, were killed when the two sides fought for the control of the Malian town of Konna, said the Israeli terrorism expert.
The Moral Liberal Contributing Editor, Jim Kouri, CPP, is the fifth Vice President and Public Information Officer of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, has served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Contact Jim.