Mali’s armed forces (FAMA) have received the first batch of 53 vehicles donated by Algeria to bolster Mali’s efforts in fighting Islamists in the Sahel.
The first tranche of vehicles, comprising logistics, combat, ambulance and troop transport vehicles, was handed over on 27 May at President Modibo Keita International Airport in Bamako-Sénou by Algerian Ambassador, Boualem Chebihi.
According to Major General Ibrahima Dahirou Dembélé, Mali’s Minister of Defence and Veterans Affairs, the donation will strengthen Mali’s armed forces in its efforts to fight against terrorism and violent extremism.
Mali’s armed forces said that a month ago it received weapons and ammunition from Algeria to equip a battalion.
Mali has taken into service a wide array of military hardware over recent years. During a parade in January, it emerged that Mali’s military was operating Streit Typhoons and DongFeng EQ2050 Mengshi vehicles configured for reconnaissance and troop transport. Mali’s armed forces are also operating Marauder armoured personnel carriers delivered from Paramount.
By the end of January, Mali’s armed forces said they had taken delivery of 35 Typhoons from the United Arab Emirates. The UAE has also donated 30 Streit Cougar armoured personnel carriers to Mali to combat Islamist militants in the Sahel.
These join 13 Aarqus Bastions handed over to Mali for its contribution to the Sahel G5 Joint Force. They were transferred on 17 January this year by the European Union Training Mission Mali.
The European Union has supplied other vehicles to Mali, notably 29 refurbished Casspirs, which were handed over in mid-July 2019 by Germany’s ambassador. They were acquired second hand under a German Ministry of Defence project.
In December 2018, Mali took delivery of 24 Storm APCs from Qatar. The vehicles, made by Qatar’s Stark Motors, are based on the Toyota Land Cruiser 79 series chassis and were to be used by Mali as well as the other four countries of the G5 Sahel group, which are Burkina Faso, Chad, Mauritania, and Niger.