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Five killed in Mali jihadist nightclub attack

Malian security forces stand guard over a grenade left behind at the site of a blast at La Terrasse bar restaurant in Bamako on March 7, 2015Five people including two Europeans and a Malian policeman died in an assault claimed by an Islamist group on a Bamako nightclub, the first attack targeting Westerners in a city braced for jihadist violence since 2012. A spokesman for Al-Murabitoun, a jihadist group run by leading Algerian militant Mokhtar Belmokhtar, claimed responsibility in an audio recording carried by Mauritanian news agency Al-Akbar, which frequently publishes what it says are statements from jihadist groups. “We claim responsibility for the latest operation in Bamako carried out by brave combatants from Al-Murabitoun to avenge our prophet against the unbelieving West which has insulted and mocked him,” the recording said. Mali’s government described the massacre as a “terrorist” attack by “those who have no other goal than to push away the prospect of peace” — a statement seen as referring to jihadists who operate across swaths of the desert north.

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