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IPFS News Link • Africa: On the Map

U.S. expands aid to French mission in Mali


The gesture comes amid a debate within the Obama administration about how deeply it should engage in the French effort to prevent Islamists from wresting control of the West African nation. French requests for more robust support from Washington raised a legal dilemma because U.S. law forbids foreign assistance funds to leaders that came to power through a coup. Mali’s military leaders, including some trained by U.S. troops, seized power last year by force.

“The French requested this support, and we believe it was important to move ahead,” a senior defense official said Saturday night, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss policy deliberations.

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