Almost 100 killed, 19 missing in central Mali village massacre

At least 95 people were killed in a central Mali village on Sunday the government said

Violence between the Dogon and Fulani has compounded an already dire security situation in Mali's semi-arid and desert regions, which are used as a base by armed groups with ties to al-Qaeda and Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

A security source at the massacre site in the village of Sobane-Kou told AFP that "a Dogon village has been virtually wiped out".

Some Peuhl leaders had vowed to carry out reprisal attacks for the March bloodshed that was blamed on the Dogon militia known as Dan Na Ambassagou.

The victims have included women and young children, and observers say hundreds of civilians were killed previous year alone.

The violence in central Mali is characterized by "killings, enforced disappearances and burning of villages on an appalling scale", Amnesty International said Monday.

In one of the bloodiest raids, around 160 Fulani villagers were murdered in March at Ogossagou, near the border with Burkina Faso, by suspected Dogon hunters.

Rivalries between Dogon and Fulani ethnic groups had led to massacres in the past.

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The Fulani are primarily cattle breeders and traders, while the Dogon are traditionally sedentary farmers.

"The pace and brutality of the communal violence, perpetrated by both armed Islamists and ethnic self-defence militias, is alarming and has left hundreds of dead and scores of burned villages in its wake", said Corinne Dufka, West Africa director at Human Rights Watch, which is also looking into the attacks.

Speaking at the United Nations headquarters in New York, Annadif voiced regret that the Malian authorities had not been present enough in the area to prevent such violence.

"If these concerns are not addressed, there is a high risk of further escalation that could lead to the commission of atrocity crimes", he wrote in a report to the UN Security Council.

MINUSMA was established after French troops in 2013 pushed back radical Islamists who seized the north of the country following an uprising by Tuareg rebels.

A spokesman for U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he was "outraged" by the news of the attack.

"The government of Mali presents its deepest condolences to mourning families and assures all measures will be taken to arrest and punish the authors of this carnage", Mali's communications ministry said in a statement, according to Reuters. Security reinforcements were deployed to track the perpetrators, it said.

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