24 February 2013, 00:35

Russian Emergencies Ministry plane delivers humanitarian aid to Mali

Russian Emergencies Ministry plane delivers humanitarian aid to Mali

A Russian Emergencies Ministry plane carrying humanitarian aid has arrived in Mali, where a political crisis has resulted in armed clashes between government troops and rebels.

"At 23.50 Moscow time Saturday an IL-76 plane with humanitarian aid landed in the Malian capital of Bamako" - the ministry’s information department reported. The 36-tonn cargo contains 45 tents, 2,000 blankets, first necessity items and food. The plane made a stopover in Tunisia for refueling.

The crisis in Mali began nearly a year ago, after the overthrow of the regime of Muammar Gaddafi in neighboring Libya. The exodus from the country of Tuareg tribes, who had enjoyed the patronage of the former Libyan leader, sparked a separatist war and resulted in formation in April 2012 of the self-proclaimed state Azawad that took over almost the whole of northern Mali.

Late last year, militant extremist groups began attacking government forces positions in the central part of the country, writes RIA Novosti.

Voice of Russia, RIA

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