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Major explosion near Gao, northern Mali

Published on Feb 10, 2013 10:07 AM

GAO, Mali(AFP) - A massive explosion near Gao in northern Mali late on Saturday raised fears of an Islamist attack, hours after villagers near the city detained two youths preparing suicide bombings.

The blast late on Saturday was audible from the northern Malian city of Gao, which French-led forces only recaptured from the Islamists late last month.

It went off at around 11pm (2300 GMT, 7am on Sunday, Singapore time), an AFP correspondent said.

A French military source said it had happened some 10km away from the French military base at the city's airport, but could provide no further details.

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