Mali diplomat claims al-Qaeda chief in the Sahel
Sunday, 08 July 2012 09:52 GMT
Rabat – Rachid BoughaA Malian diplomat has disclosed that Ayman al-Zawahri, the al-Qaeda chief, is in the Sahel region and that he is personally overseeing the military training of al-Qaeda fighters to prepare them for suicide missions in target countries, especially Western ones.
Meanwhile, Mali Prime Minister Sheikh Modibo Diarra has asked Morocco to help his country to restore unity and sovereignty through "all possible means".
The Mali diplomat, on condition of anonymity, warned through a statement to the Moroccan media and countries in the region, that al-Zawahri's arrival in the Sahel will jeopardise the whole region.
The Mali ambassador in the Moroccan capital Rabat, has stressed that security risks experienced in the Sahel are no longer the sole responsibility of Mali, but of the entireinternational community.
The source added that northern Mali has come under the control of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and other armed groups. He stated that the Mokhtar Belmokhtar battalion is now "the master of the game" in the region and is roaming freely.
The UN Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 2056 on July 6, calling on all the countries of the Sahel and Maghreb to intensify their cooperation in fighting the activities of the AQIM organisation and relevant militant groups.