What is Operation Barkhane?
Operation Barkhane is an on-going anti-insurgency operation that was launched in August 2014 against Islamist groups in Africa’s Sahel. It is a joint operation involving France and its former colonies – Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger. Headquartered in Chad, it was initiated after France intervened in 2013 to help drive back rebels who have captured several parts of Mali.
France recently announced that it had halted Operation Barkhane with Mali in opposition to the coup d’etat in the West African nation led by Col Assimi Goita. African intergovernmental groups ECOWAS and AU have also suspended Mali over this coup.