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France continues to help fight terrorism in Mali

In the latest attack, at least 21 people were killed in the former French colony's capital on Friday.

FILE: Malian security forces evacuate two women from an area surrounding the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako on 20 November, 2015. Picture: AFP.

PRETORIA - French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius says France will continue to play a leading role in fighting terrorism in Mali, adding that it's also training and helping other African countries with intelligence to counter the Jihadi threat.

Fabius did not name the other countries.

He says France stepped in two years ago at Mali's request to drive al-Qaeda terrorists who took control of two thirds of that vast country and were threatening the capital Bamako.

It's still playing an active military role there although it is up to Malian forces to react first to any situation.

He says France can and will assist in increasing the capacity of other Africans fight the scourge of terrorism that threatens every country on earth.

Meanwhile, security forces in Mali are reportedly searching for three suspects involved in the deadly attack on the Radisson Blu Hotel in Bamako.

At least 21 people were killed in the former French colony's capital on Friday.

Gunmen shouting Islamic slogans attacked the Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako on Friday, before Malian commandos stormed the building and freed 170 hostages, many of them foreigners.

The country declared a 10 day state of emergency and entered into a three-day mourning period.