The French army accused Russian mercenaries of trying to push the soldiers of Operation Barkhane to commit violations near the Jossi base in northern Mali. The staff then denounced a “media attack.”
The French military has filmed what it claims are Russian mercenaries burying their bodies near the Jossi base in northern Mali. According to her, the sole purpose was to accuse the French of leaving a mass grave behind, when Malian soldiers discovered it a few hours later.
As for that, the Malian army indicated that it had discovered “remains in advanced rot” near this base, which the French army restored on Tuesday, April 19, and announced the opening of an investigation.
In a video captured by a drone and accessed by the French news agency (AFP), which the General Staff described as a “media attack”. And then the soldiers appear who are busy around the corpses, which they cover with sand. In another scene we see two of these soldiers depicting half-buried corpses.
The staff asserts that they are white soldiers who have been identified in videos and photos taken elsewhere. Some images also show compounds emerging from a base whose structure and environment are compatible with the Jossie effect.
The keys to this reservation, which includes 300 French soldiers, were handed over to the Armed Forces of Mali (Fama) on Tuesday as part of the French disengagement from Mali, announced in February.
This is the first time the French military has broadcast images with a drone in such a short time to counter a media attack, while the struggle for influence is now raging on social networks.
For its part, the Malian staff announced the discovery of a “mass grave not far from the camp formerly occupied by the French force Barkhane”, named after the French operation against the jihadists in the Sahel region. He explained that it was discovered by a reconnaissance patrol in the immediate vicinity of the base, after shootings shortly after the departure of the French soldiers.
The state of advanced decomposition of the corpses indicates that this mass grave existed long before the handover. Thus, the responsibility for this act can in no way be attributed to the Malian armed forces,” he noted in a press release. The Ministry of Defense “is seized to open an investigation with the aim of revealing all light on the aforementioned mass grave.”
A maneuver to discredit Barkhane’s force.
At the beginning of the case, the photos were published Thursday on the account Twitter For a man named Dia Diarra, he describes himself as a “former soldier” and a “Mali patriot”. This account was created in January 2022. After warning on Wednesday, April 20 of the imminent publication of a video showing violations committed by the French, he posted the next day a photo of blurred bodies buried in the sand. This photo was accompanied by the following caption: “This is what the French left behind when they left the base in #Gossi (…) We cannot remain silent about it!” The same account later posted a short video of the half-buried bodies.
“We are witnessing an organized media maneuver,” said a spokesman for the French General Staff, Colonel Pascal Egny, based on the “upgrading of the first tweet.”
The Dia Diarra account “is most likely a fake account created by Wagner,” the Russian private military company, the French crew estimated. This maneuver to discredit Barkhane’s force appears coordinated. It represents the multiple media attacks on French soldiers several months ago.
According to the French army, “a comparison of the images posted on Twitter and the images collected by the specialized sensor makes it possible to directly link what the Wagner mercenaries do to what is wrongly attributed to the French soldiers.”