Fifteen days ago I reported on the French intervention in Mali, Operation Serval, and the progress they have made in that time. Since January 14th, French and Malian forces have taken back two of the remaining major urban centers in Northern Mali: Timbuktu, Gao, and are on the verge of recapturing the distant Northeastern town of Kidal.
France has also increased the troop presence from roughly 400 troops on the ground three weeks ago to roughly 2,100 as of January 30th with another 1000 supporting from neighboring countries. The Islamists have now been pushed back to their Saharan desert hideouts – a portion of Mali the size of Texas.
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