German foreign Minister Heiko Maas has set the Bundeswehr troops in Mali on a long-term use in the of terrorist groups-torn West African country.

During a visit by the German soldiers of the UN peacekeeping force Minusma in Gao, he said it was a “very dangerous”. The peace process between the government and rebel groups will always be torpedoed again by terrorists. “However, we need to assert ourselves, therefore, here one needs a long breath.”

In the UN military camp in Gao, on the edge of the Sahara, about 700 German soldiers participate in the UN-blue helmet force. On the second military base in Mali is about 900 kilometres further South, in Koulikoro, near the capital city, Bamako, had been killed on Sunday in a heavy attack.

the camp of the EU training mission EUTM has been attacked with car bombs and small arms. The Al-Qaeda-near Alliance Dschamat Nusrat al-Islam wa al-Muslim (supporters group for the Islam and Muslims, JNIM) claimed the attack as the spokesman for the Malian military, Diaran Koné said Wednesday. Several terrorist groups had closed in 2017 to the Alliance, including Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQMI). According to German army specifications in the attack, three of Mali were injured cal soldiers, of the 170 stationed there, and the German soldiers, nobody was hurt.

Maas said the Bundeswehr additional protection in view, if this was necessary. You will do everything to ensure that the soldiers could provide the “best possible equipment and the best possible infrastructure” for your safety.

Islamist militias are mainly in the North of the country actively, especially in the area around Gao. The South of Mali, where the attack was perpetrated, had, however, previously considered relatively safe. The North of Mali was like in 2012, temporarily, in the hands of rebels, and could only be by a French Intervention.

another attack came on Monday in Central Mali, according to authorities details of at least 18 people were killed. Unknown killed near Koro in the Mopti Region of a human, and hidden on his body an explosive device that killed 17 other people, such as Ousmane Balla Diarra, the Deputy prefect of the Region of Koro, said on Wednesday. Who is responsible for it, was initially unclear.

Maas is since Monday on a five-day trip through three African countries. Prior to Mali, he had held talks in Sierra Leone and Burkina Faso.

dpa