At least 10 people were killed in an explosion near a military base in the city of Sevare in Mali on April 22, AP reports , citing the press service of the country's army. On this base, in particular, the Wagner PMC mercenaries are quartered.
Reuters writes that there were three explosions and that the bombs were set off by suicide bombers. According to the agency, nine people died, 60 were injured, and about 20 houses were destroyed. Authorities in the region claim that all the dead and injured were civilians. Local residents told AP that they heard gunfire in addition to the explosion. The agency also cites a statement from the Mali government saying that "three vehicles filled with explosives were destroyed by army drone fire."
No one claimed responsibility for the attack, but a few days before the attack, it was reported that part of the Mopti region, where the city of Sevare is located, was taken under control by rebel groups associated with ISIS and al-Qaeda. On Saturday, April 22, the Mali authorities announced that the army had destroyed the rebel base in the city of Boni, located in the same region.
Al-Jazeera notes that Malian military personnel, UN peacekeepers and Wagner PMC mercenaries are present at the military base in Sevare, where the attack took place. It is the latter, most likely, that were the target of the attack, says Lassan Ouedraogo Vedraogo, an expert at the African Center for Democracy and Development. According to him, it is impossible to say exactly which group carried out the attack, but its character points to Jamaat Nasr al-Islam wal Muslimeen. Representatives of this group have recently expressed dissatisfaction with the presence of the Wagnerites in Mali.
Wagner PMC mercenaries appeared in Mali after a military junta seized power in the country in 2021. She uses the services of the Wagnerites to fight insurgent groups. It was also reported that the Russian PMC has interests in the field of mining at local deposits.
After the junta seized power and the appearance of Wagner PMC mercenaries in the country, Sweden and France withdrew their military personnel from Mali. The French ambassador was also expelled from the country.