The situation in Mali continues to worsen with the Malian military and its French allies suffering casualties in combat operations recently.

A Malian military unit was caught in an ambush by Islamic jihadists on Thursday night. The ambush occurred in the western part of the country near the Mauritania border, the Malian army said in a statement Friday. 

The Malian Army posted on Twitter that its mission in Guire suffered deaths, injuries, and material damage on Thursday’s ambush. “Reinforcements have been dispatched there,” it added.

It was the largest attack on the military since it removed President Keita and his government from office on August 18.

Additionally, two French soldiers were killed and another one wounded on Saturday in an operation near Tessalit in Mali’s northeastern Kidal region after their armored vehicle hit an improvised explosive device, the Élysée Palace announced.

The French troops were part of the ongoing “Operation Barkhane,” the French-led effort to rid the Sahel region of an Islamic insurgency. The soldiers were members of the Airborne regiment based in Tarbes, southwestern France.

French President Emmanuel Macron said that France mourns for the soldiers’ sacrifice. He sent his “sincere condolences to their families and loved ones” while praising the “courage and determination of the French military deployed in the Sahel region.” He also took the opportunity to call on the leaders of the military group to speed up the transition to civilian rule.

The military’s coup against President Keita has been condemned internationally and regionally among Mali’s West African neighbors. There is concern that the coup could undermine the coalition’s military campaigns against Islamist militants in the region.