Listen to article
No fewer than 31 people were killed in central Mali after militants attacked a bus carrying civilians to a market on Friday, local officials have disclosed.
According to the authorities, some unidentified gunmen opened fire and killed the driver, before setting the bus on fire on Friday morning.
Most of the victims were women who were on their way to work at the market, local sources told reporters.
The deadly attack is the latest in Mali’s rapidly escalating jihadist insurgency in the West African country.
Armed men ‘shot at the vehicle, slashed the tires, and shot at the people’, Moulaye Guindo, the mayor of the nearby town of Bankass, told newsmen.
He said more people were either missing or wounded.
The bus was targeted as it made its twice-weekly journey from the village of Songo to a market in Bandiagara, 10km (6.2 miles) away.
The attack took place at the heart of the West African nation’s Mopti region, which has seen escalating violence in recent months fuelled by fighters linked to Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group.
AFRICA DAILY NEWS, NEW YORK