US News: Mali: Malian soldiers, Russians and dozos hunters accused of massive flights of cattle

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(Illustration) Des accusations de vol de bétail par l'armée, ses supplétifs russes et les chasseurs dozos émergent au Mali. © David Baché/RFI (illustration) of the accusations of theft of cattle by the army, its Russian auxiliaries and the Dozos hunters emerge in Mali.

In Mali, army's anti -terrorist operations continue, as are allegations of abuses. In recent weeks, a new operating mode has emerged in the regions of Mopti and Bandiagara in particular: the massive flight of cattle. The Malian soldiers, the traditional Dozos hunters who accompany them as well as the Russian auxilions of the Malian army, are implicated.

In the municipalities of Fakala, Sio, Pignari, Doucombo, Fatoma or Sofara, for several weeks, many local sources have alerted massive flights of cattle by the Malian army and its auxiliaries: traditional dozos and Russian fighters. The latter are simple trainers according to Bamako and the mercenaries of the Wagner group, according to a large number of European, African or American countries.

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The figures are difficult to cross -check with precision, but, according to these sources, the cumulative flights represents in any case several thousand cows, and no less sheep and goats.

The flight of cattle is not new: whenever Malian army anti -terrorist operations are tainted with accusations of abuses, such as collective executions, these allegations almost systematically include destruction and jewelry flights, Furniture, cereals or animals.

But it appears today that certain operations in fact only have the main objective of stripping certain villages of their cattle. A vital resource for breeders' populations. Community representatives, associative and researchers, all Malians, wonder: is it to starve populations suspected of collusion with the jihadists? Or simply to pay, literally, on the beast by reselling animals, living or in the butcher, as some testimonies indicate?

At the end of October, the jihadists of the JNIM, the support group for Islam and Muslims, linked to Al-Qaeda, said in a statement that they had recovered livestock stolen by the FAMA and their Russian auxiliaries in Bogolo, near Bandiagara. The Malian army, which did not follow up on the requests of RFI, said in a press release having recovered 600 cattle heads on November 10 "from the hands of the terrorists" in Somadougou, in the Mopti region . She specifies having returned to the inhabitants.

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