France pledges to fight until Mali's Islamist rebels are wiped out

The Guardian 16 January 2013
By Angelique Chrisafis and Afua Hirsch

France will only end its intervention in Mali when political stability and an election process have been restored to the chaotic west African country and Islamist groups have been wiped out, the French president said on Tuesday, raising the prospect of a drawn-out engagement on hostile desert terrain.

The French defence minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, said a "relentless" fight with Islamists was continuing on Tuesday night and France would stay "as long as necessary". (continue reading...)