UPDATE: 4:30 a.m. EST -- Two U.N. peacekeepers and a contractor were killed, and 20 others were injured in a mortar attack Saturday on a peacekeeping base in northern Mali, Olivier Salgado, a spokesman for the U.N. force in Mali, told CNN. There has been no claim of responsibility until now, he added.
UPDATE: 4:18 a.m. EST -- Three people were killed when gunmen launched a rocket attack on a U.N. peacekeeping base in Kidal, a town in northern Mali, Agence France-Presse reported, citing U.N. sources. It is unclear how many people were injured in the incident. The identity of the attackers also remains unknown.
Unidentified gunmen on Saturday fired rockets at a United Nations peacekeeping base in the northern Mali town of Kidal, causing an unspecified number of causalities, Reuters reported.
“The attack happened at around 4 a.m. (11 p.m. EST). Four or five rockets landed inside the base. Quite a few people were wounded but it’s too early for a precise number,” Olivier Salgado, a spokesman for the U.N. force in Mali, told Reuters.
U.N. peacekeeping forces and French troops have struggled to stabilize the regions of northern Mali, which has seen a rise in violence linked to Islamic fighters since 2012.
The incident follows a hostage crisis at a luxury hotel in Mali’s capital Bamako last week, in which 20 people were killed. Three Islamist militant groups -- al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQMI), its splinter group al Mourabitoun and Massina Liberation Front (MLF) -- reportedly claimed the attack on the Radisson Blu hotel.