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In Pictures : French Military Intervention in Mali

January 17, 2013 , 5 : 38 pm GST

French soldiers listen as Malian President Dioncounda Traore speaks at a Malian air base in Bamako, Mali January 16, 2013. French troops launched their first ground assault against Islamist rebels in Mali on Wednesday in a broadening of their operation against battle-hardened al Qaeda-linked fighters who have resisted six days of air strikes. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
French soldiers listen as Malian President Dioncounda Traore speaks at a Malian air base in Bamako, Mali January 16, 2013. French troops launched their first ground assault against Islamist rebels in Mali on Wednesday in a broadening of their operation against battle-hardened al Qaeda-linked fighters who have resisted six days of air strikes. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
A French army officer (R) talks to his Malian counterpart outside where a meeting is taking place for the intervention force provided by the ECOWAS grouping of West African states, in Bamako January 15, 2013. France kept up its air strikes against al Qaeda rebels in Mali as plans to deploy African troops gathered pace on Tuesday. There are concerns that delays could endanger a wider mission to dislodge al Qaeda in Maghreb (AQIM) and its allies. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
A French army officer (R) talks to his Malian counterpart outside where a meeting is taking place for the intervention force provided by the ECOWAS grouping of West African states, in Bamako January 15, 2013. France kept up its air strikes against al Qaeda rebels in Mali as plans to deploy African troops gathered pace on Tuesday. There are concerns that delays could endanger a wider mission to dislodge al Qaeda in Maghreb (AQIM) and its allies. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
French army soldiers stand on armoured vehicles as they leave Bamako and start their deployment to the north of Mali as part of the "Serval" operations on January 15, 2013 . France is using air and ground power in a joint offensive with Malian soldiers launched on January 11 against groups affiliated to al Qaeda rebels controlling northern Mali. Photo - AFP/ISSOUF SANOGO
French army soldiers stand on armoured vehicles as they leave Bamako and start their deployment to the north of Mali as part of the "Serval" operations on January 15, 2013 . France is using air and ground power in a joint offensive with Malian soldiers launched on January 11 against groups affiliated to al Qaeda rebels controlling northern Mali. Photo - AFP/ISSOUF SANOGO
A picture taken on May 3, 2012 shows a Malian refugee girl pulling a jerrican of water at the Mbere refugee camp, near Bassiknou, southern Mauritania, 60 km from the border with Mali. The conflict in Mali has caused nearly 150,000 people to flee the country, while about another 230,000 are internally displaced, the UN humanitarian agency said on January 15, 2013. According to OCHA, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees has registered 144,500 refugees in neighbouring countries - 54,100 in Mauritania, 50,000 in Niger, 38,800 in Burkina Faso and 1,500 in Algeria. Photo - AFP / ABDELHAK SENNA
A picture taken on May 3, 2012 shows a Malian refugee girl pulling a jerrican of water at the Mbere refugee camp, near Bassiknou, southern Mauritania, 60 km from the border with Mali. The conflict in Mali has caused nearly 150,000 people to flee the country, while about another 230,000 are internally displaced, the UN humanitarian agency said on January 15, 2013. According to OCHA, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees has registered 144,500 refugees in neighbouring countries - 54,100 in Mauritania, 50,000 in Niger, 38,800 in Burkina Faso and 1,500 in Algeria. Photo - AFP / ABDELHAK SENNA
A French Army Land Rover and pallets of rations are seen on a Royal Air Force C17 cargo aircraft as it prepares to leave for Bamako in Mali from Abidjan in the Ivory Coast, January 16, 2013. The British Royal Air Force is lending logistical support to France as it sends forces to Mali. Help from NATO allies including Britain, the United States, Germany, Belgium, Canada and Denmark means the first African troops should start arriving in Mali within days and a 3,000-strong ECOWAS contingent could gather in the next few weeks. Photo - REUTERS/Andrew Winning
A French Army Land Rover and pallets of rations are seen on a Royal Air Force C17 cargo aircraft as it prepares to leave for Bamako in Mali from Abidjan in the Ivory Coast, January 16, 2013. The British Royal Air Force is lending logistical support to France as it sends forces to Mali. Help from NATO allies including Britain, the United States, Germany, Belgium, Canada and Denmark means the first African troops should start arriving in Mali within days and a 3,000-strong ECOWAS contingent could gather in the next few weeks. Photo - REUTERS/Andrew Winning
An undated grab from a video obtained by Mauritanian news agency ANI reportedly shows former Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) emir Mokhtar Belmokhtar speaking at an undisclosed location. The rebels are holding 41 foreigners hostage, including seven Americans, after an attack on a gas field in eastern Algeria, a spokesman for the militants told two Mauritanian news websites. Photo - AFP / HO / ANI
An undated grab from a video obtained by Mauritanian news agency ANI reportedly shows former Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) emir Mokhtar Belmokhtar speaking at an undisclosed location. The rebels are holding 41 foreigners hostage, including seven Americans, after an attack on a gas field in eastern Algeria, a spokesman for the militants told two Mauritanian news websites. Photo - AFP / HO / ANI
Motorcyclists drive past a mural showing Malian soldiers in the Malian capital of Bamako January 13, 2013. The leadership of both France and its former colony, Mali, has vowed to keep fighting al Qaeda-backed rebels until they are completely defeated. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
Motorcyclists drive past a mural showing Malian soldiers in the Malian capital of Bamako January 13, 2013. The leadership of both France and its former colony, Mali, has vowed to keep fighting al Qaeda-backed rebels until they are completely defeated. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
French soldiers arrange equipment in a tank at a Malian air base in Bamako January 15, 2013. The French army sent some 50 armoured vehicles to Mali from their military base in Ivory Coast, which arrived late Monday night. France hit al Qaeda rebels in Mali with fresh air strikes and deployed armoured cars on Tuesday, stepping up its intervention in the West African state as regional allies struggled to accelerate their plans to send in troops. REUTERS/Joe Penney
French soldiers arrange equipment in a tank at a Malian air base in Bamako January 15, 2013. The French army sent some 50 armoured vehicles to Mali from their military base in Ivory Coast, which arrived late Monday night. France hit al Qaeda rebels in Mali with fresh air strikes and deployed armoured cars on Tuesday, stepping up its intervention in the West African state as regional allies struggled to accelerate their plans to send in troops. REUTERS/Joe Penney
Malian soldiers stand guard as Mali
Malian soldiers stand guard as Mali's President Dioncounda Traore speaks to French troops at an air base in Bamako, Mali January 16, 2013. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
Yacouba Konate, 56, wears a French flag to show his support for the French military intervention in Mali in the Malian capital of Bamako. France is determined to end Islamist domination of northern Mali, which many fear could act as a base for attacks on the West and for links with al Qaeda in Yemen, Somalia and North Africa. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
Yacouba Konate, 56, wears a French flag to show his support for the French military intervention in Mali in the Malian capital of Bamako. France is determined to end Islamist domination of northern Mali, which many fear could act as a base for attacks on the West and for links with al Qaeda in Yemen, Somalia and North Africa. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
Girls attend a French class at a secondary school in the Malian capital Bamako. The Malian government had shut public schools in Bamako and the military garrison town of Kati on January 9 due to growing insecurity, but a French-backed military offensive against al Qaeda rebels in the north of the country has renewed confidence in the security of the cities. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
Girls attend a French class at a secondary school in the Malian capital Bamako. The Malian government had shut public schools in Bamako and the military garrison town of Kati on January 9 due to growing insecurity, but a French-backed military offensive against al Qaeda rebels in the north of the country has renewed confidence in the security of the cities. Photo - REUTERS/Joe Penney
The flag-draped coffin of French lieutenant Damien Boiteux of the 4th helicopter special forces regiment, who was killed during the French intervention in Mali, is carried by pall bearers into the courtyard of the Invalides during a national ceremony of homage in Paris January 15, 2013.    REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer
The flag-draped coffin of French lieutenant Damien Boiteux of the 4th helicopter special forces regiment, who was killed during the French intervention in Mali, is carried by pall bearers into the courtyard of the Invalides during a national ceremony of homage in Paris January 15, 2013. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer
French President Francois Hollande addresses the French community ahead of his departure from the United Arab Emirates, on January 15, 2013. France will wrap up its intervention in Mali and pull its forces out once the West African country has returned to being stable and safe with a solid political system, Hollande said on Tuesday. Photo - REUTERS/Jumana ElHeloueh
French President Francois Hollande addresses the French community ahead of his departure from the United Arab Emirates, on January 15, 2013. France will wrap up its intervention in Mali and pull its forces out once the West African country has returned to being stable and safe with a solid political system, Hollande said on Tuesday. Photo - REUTERS/Jumana ElHeloueh
French troops drive to Segou January 16, 2013. French troops launched their first ground assault against Islamist rebels in Mali on Wednesday in a broadening of their operation against battle-hardened al Qaeda-linked fighters who have resisted six days of air strikes. Photo - REUTERS/Francois Rihouay
French troops drive to Segou January 16, 2013. French troops launched their first ground assault against Islamist rebels in Mali on Wednesday in a broadening of their operation against battle-hardened al Qaeda-linked fighters who have resisted six days of air strikes. Photo - REUTERS/Francois Rihouay
A French soldier stands between two Mirage F1 fighter jets at the Malian army air base in Bamako January 14, 2013. France plans to increase its troops in Mali to 2,500 in the days ahead and is working to speed up the deployment of West African troops for a campaign against al Qaeda rebels, the government said on Monday. REUTERS/Joe Penney
A French soldier stands between two Mirage F1 fighter jets at the Malian army air base in Bamako January 14, 2013. France plans to increase its troops in Mali to 2,500 in the days ahead and is working to speed up the deployment of West African troops for a campaign against al Qaeda rebels, the government said on Monday. REUTERS/Joe Penney

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