(TELESUR) – Nearly 100 people were killed in Mali last night when a unknown group carried out a ruthless attack on a villages inside the central region of this African nation.
Local officials told the AFP News Agency that “armed men, suspected to be terrorists, launched a murderous attack on this peaceful village.”
The government, giving a provisional toll, said 95 people had been killed, 19 were missing, numerous farm animals had been slaughtered and homes had been torched.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility but the massacre, targeting a village inhabited by the Dogon community, bore the hallmarks of tit-for-tat ethnic attacks that have claimed hundreds of lives.
A Malian security source told the AFP at the site of the massacre that “a Dogon village has been virtually wiped out.”
It came less than three months after nearly 160 members of the Fulani ethnic group were slaughtered by a group identified as Dogon.
“This country cannot be led by a cycle of revenge, and vendetta,” Mali’s President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita told ORTM public television from Switzerland, where he said he was cutting short an official visit.
He called on Malians to come together to “allow our nation to survive, because this is a question of survival.”
A survivor who gave his name as Amadou Togo said “about 50 heavily armed men arrived on motorbikes and pickups,” adding that “they first surrounded the village and then attacked — anyone who tried to escape was killed.”