Replay
The Sound Kitchen
High-flying women
 
Listen Download Podcast
  • RFI English News flash 04h00 - 04h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/27 04h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 04h10 - 04h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 08/27 04h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 05h00 - 05h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/27 05h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 05h10 - 05h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 08/27 05h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 06h00 - 06h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/27 06h00 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 06h10 - 06h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 08/27 06h10 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 06h30 - 06h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/27 06h30 GMT
  • Paris Live AM 06h33 - 06h59 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 08/27 06h33 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 07h00 - 07h10 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/27 07h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 07h30 - 07h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/27 07h30 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h00 - 14h03 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 08/21 14h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h00 - 14h06 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/26 14h00 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 14h03 - 14h30 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 08/21 14h03 GMT
  • Paris Live PM 14h06 - 14h30 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 08/26 14h06 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 14h30 - 14h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/26 14h30 GMT
  • Paris Live PM 14h33 - 14h59 GMT Mon-Fri
    Features and analysis 08/26 14h33 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h00 - 16h03 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 08/21 16h00 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h00 - 16h06 GMT Sat-Sun
    News bulletin 08/26 16h00 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 16h03 - 16h30 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 08/21 16h03 GMT
  • RFI English News flash 16h30 - 16h33 GMT Mon-Fri
    News bulletin 08/26 16h30 GMT
  • Paris Live Weekend 16h33 - 17h00 GMT Sat-Sun
    Features and analysis 08/21 16h33 GMT
To take full advantage of multimedia content, you must have the Flash plugin installed in your browser. To connect, you need to enable cookies in your browser settings. For an optimal navigation, the RFI site is compatible with the following browsers: Internet Explorer 8 and above, Firefox 10 and +, Safari 3+, Chrome 17 and + etc.
Africa

Malian troops recapture key towns from Islamist rebels

media French army vehicle in the Malian town of Markala. Reuters/Francois Rihouay

French-backed Malian troops have retaken two key central towns from Islamist rebels days after French troops launched a ground offensive to compliment airstrikes in the north of the country.

After days of fighting, soldiers have taken control of Konna, a key town about 700 kilometres from the capital Bamako, and in Diabaly, 400 kilometres north of Bamako.

Colonel Didier Dakouo, the head of the Malian forces based in Sevare south of Konna, told news agency AFP his troops had "crushed the enemy."

In Diabaly, which the Islamist militants had seized on Monday even as their bases were pounded by French fighter jets, local sources reported the rebels had been driven out.

"Diabaly is freed, the Islamists have left and the French and Malian troops have entered the town," said a member of the local municipal council. Her statement was confirmed by a regional security source.

The rebels' retreat coincided with a demand from veteran Algerian Islamist Mohktar Belmokhtar for talks to end the French campaign against extremists controlling the north of Mali.

Belmokhtar has claimed responsibility for launching Wednesday's attack on an Algerian gas complex, where Algerian and foreign workers are being held hostage.

A source close to him told Mauritania's ANI news agency that a video would be distributed to the media proposing that "France and Algeria negotiate an end to the war being waged by France in Azawad", or northern Mali.

The French military operation started a week ago and was prompted by the fall of Konna to rebels amid fears they would push south to the capital Bamako from their northern stronghold.

The UN refugee agency warned fighting in the next few months could displace another 700,000 people, taking the overall number of displaced passed the million mark.

"We believe that in the near future there could be up to 300,000 people additionally displaced inside Mali, and over 400,000 additionally displaced in the neighbouring countries," UNHCR spokeswoman Melissa Flemming told reporters in Geneva.

Paris says it already has 1,400 soldiers in Mali, set to increase to 2,500, while regional powers have pledged some 5,800 troops for an African military force.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said he would attend an emergency summit of the West African bloc ECOWAS on Saturday in the Ivory Coast city of Abidjan to accelerate the African deployment.

Related
 
Sorry but the period of time connection to the operation is exceeded.