A statement from the Chad Army reports that 13 of their soldiers were killed in a major battle today in the mountains along the border between Mali and Algeria. They claimed 65 rebels were killed in the fight as well.
Chad was one of the first nations to join in the French invasion of Mali, announcing a deployment of 2,000 troops in the nation. Chad was seen as likely to play a major role given the similar terrain in Chad and northern Mali.
French officials expressed hope that Chad could eventually take the lead in the war, but exactly how able they will be to sustain such a large effort, given their relatively small military and ongoing internal operations against rebels.
No rebel group has yet responded to the claim they lost 65 fighters in the battle. This would be unusual since the groups have spread their forces out since the French invasion to avoid air strikes.
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