French President Macron announced last month Operation Barkhane, a seven-year campaign fighting militants linked to Al Qaeda and Daesh in the Sahel, will formally end.
Insecurity in the Sahel region, stands as a symptom of a deeper crisis of governance and political instability.
Local officials say France's Operation Barkhane killed six civilians who had gone to hunt birds and rabbits in remote Gao region, but French forces claim they targeted militants.
Investigation finds worrying trend with French soldiers openly showing sympathies with neo-Nazi ideas and symbols.
In the latest string of attacks, a group of bandits on motorbikes shot up a village, killing 20 people, Niger's Tillaberi governor said.
The ambush, which involved a car bomb explosion followed by gunfire, took place two days after militants killed at least six people during a raid on a military headquarters in central Mali.
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