3 UN peacekeepers 'gravely wounded' in a rocket attack in Mali
Three United Nations peacekeepers were on Sunday seriously injured in a rocket attack on a military base in the north of the conflict-ridden Sahel state, UN and local officials said.
Olivier Salgado, the spokesman for the UN's MINUSMA mission in Mali, said the attack took place on a base in Tessalit -- in the north -- which houses Malian soldiers, UN peacekeepers and French troops.
Three peacekeepers were "gravely wounded" in the attack, he added.
A Tessalit tribal leader, who declined to be named, said that the camp had come under rocket fire, hitting the barracks of peacekeepers from Chad.
"The situation is currently calm and under control," he added.
Mali has been battling a brutal jihadist insurgency since 2012 when Islamist fighters first emerged during a rebellion by ethnic Tuareg separatists in the north.
France intervened to crush the rebellion, but the jihadists scattered and regrouped, taking their campaign into central Mali in 2015 and then into neighbouring Niger and Burkina Faso.
First established in 2013, the 13,000-strong MINUSMA has suffered one of the highest death tolls of any mission in UN peacekeeping history.
Over 130 of its personnel have been killed as a result of hostile acts, including six this year, according to UN statistics, out of a total of around 230 deaths since the mission began.