Tillerson says would support maintaining Russia sanctions for now

Former ExxonMobil executive Rex Tillerson testifies during his confirmation hearing for US secretary of state before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on Wednesday. (AFP / SAUL LOEB)
Updated 11 January 2017
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Tillerson says would support maintaining Russia sanctions for now

WASHINGTON: President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, said on Wednesday he would support maintaining US sanctions on Russia until the United States further develops its approach to the country.
“I would leave things in the status quo so we are able to convey this can go either way,” Tillerson said during his confirmation hearing, in response to a question on whether he thought right now is the right time to lift sanctions on Russia.


20 killed in suspected militant attack in Mali: sources

Updated 13 min 59 sec ago
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20 killed in suspected militant attack in Mali: sources

  • The deaths came after more than 100 people including many civilians, particularly from the Fulani and Tuareg communities, died in recent months as a result of attacks by rival armed groups in the region
  • The French military has said the militant group Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS) is using the border region as a haven

BAMAKO: Around 20 people including civilians were killed in a suspected militant attack in northeastern Mali near the border with Niger, sources said.
The deaths came after more than 100 people including many civilians, particularly from the Fulani and Tuareg communities, died in recent months as a result of attacks by rival armed groups in the region.
A local official in the town of Talataye — where Saturday’s attack took place — said late Sunday that the assailants arrived in three vehicles and on a motorcycle.
Khalil Toure, a teacher, added: “They opened fire on a group of people resting under a tree, killing five people on the spot and wounding two.”
Militants have also ramped up their activities in central Mali in recent months, targeting domestic and foreign forces in violence once confined to the country’s north.
France intervened militarily in Mali in 2013 to help government forces drive Al-Qaeda-linked militants out of the north.
But large tracts of the country remain lawless despite a peace accord signed with ethnic Tuareg leaders in mid-2015 aimed at isolating the militants.
The violence has also spilled over into both Burkina Faso and Niger.
The French military has said the militant group Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS) is using the border region as a haven.