The Prime Minister has announced that Chinook helicopters and supporting personnel will extend their tour in Mali by six months.
The Ministry of Defence say that three Chinook helicopters and almost 100 service personnel have been deployed to the French-led operation in Mali since 2018.
“The UK’s helicopters bring a unique logistical capability to the operation, allowing French ground forces to operate more effectively across the Sahel including in Niger and Burkina Faso. French forces, with UK support, are leading the fight against violent extremism in a region where militants linked to Al-Qa’ida and Islamic State pose a constant threat.”
Defence Secretary Penny Mordaunt said:
“Increasing instability across the Sahel is causing pain and suffering to local communities and posing a real threat to European security.
It is right that we extend our commitment to the counter-terror operation in Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger. By providing essential support to our French partners our Armed Forces are helping to build stability and deny terrorists a haven from which to plan attacks.”
The Government also say that as well as boosting stability and prosperity, ‘this supports international efforts to counter illegal migration through and from the Sahel’.