Putin condemns Mali attack with several Russians killed

AFP , Saturday 21 Nov 2015

President Vladimir Putin condemned Friday's attack on a hotel in Mali that killed 21 people including several Russians, the Kremlin and a foreign ministry spokeswoman said on Saturday.

In a message to Mali's President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, Putin "stressed that the inhuman crime committed in Mali's capital again confirms that terrorism knows no borders and is a real danger for the whole world," the Kremlin said in a statement.

"People of different nationalities and beliefs become its victims, and it is only possible to confront this threat with the broadest international cooperation," Putin added.

The statement came as foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said several Russians were among the dead in Mali.

"As of the morning of November 21, we can confirm that Russian citizens are among the dead," Zakharova told RIA Novosti news agency, citing information from the Russian embassy.

"After we receive reliable information on the numbers and names, the foreign ministry will make a statement on this."

The ministry on Friday afternoon had initially denied that any Russians were in the hotel during the attack.

In August, a Russian UN contractor was among those rescued from a hostage siege at another hotel in central Mali.

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