China President Xi ‘strongly condemns’ Mali attack

Security forces surrounding the Radisson Hotel during the hostage situation at Bamako, Mali on Nov 20, 2015.
Security forces surrounding the Radisson Hotel during the hostage situation at Bamako, Mali on Nov 20, 2015. PHOTO: EPA

 BEIJING (AFP) – China’s President Xi Jinping on Saturday (Nov 21) “strongly condemned” the attack on a hotel in Mali which left three Chinese nationals dead among at least 27 killed, state television reported.

Gun-toting terrorists took more than 100 people hostage for around nine hours at a luxury hotel in Mali’s capital Bamako on Friday (Nov 20).

The Chinese leader expressed his condolences to the families of the victims, as he urged government agencies to increase work to protect citizens abroad and called on the international community to do more to prevent violent acts.

“China will strengthen cooperation with international society to resolutely fight violent terrorist activities that hurt innocent lives, to maintain world peace and tranquillity,” China Central Television quoted Xi as saying.

State-owned China Railway Construction Corp, the country’s biggest engineering contractor, has confirmed the deaths of three executives who were visiting to discuss cooperative projects with the African country’s government.

Four Chinese nationals were rescued, according to the foreign ministry.

The assault was claimed by the Al-Murabitoun group, an Al-Qaeda affiliate led by notorious one-eyed Algerian militant Mokhtar Belmokhtar.

The incident added to fears over the global terrorist threat a week after the devastating Paris attacks that killed 130 people and were claimed by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group.