BAMAKO French and Malian soldiers have wrested control of the central Malian town of Diabaly from Islamist fighters after a French air strike on Friday morning, the mayor of the town told Reuters.
"The forces are in the town carrying out mopping up operations. There are lots of burned-out vehicles that the Islamists tried to hide in the orchards," Diabaly mayor Oumar Diakite said by telephone.
Diabaly was seized by Islamists earlier this week and has since marked the frontline in a push by French and Malian forces to retake the north of the landlocked West African country from al Qaeda-linked rebels. (Reporting by Adama Diarra; Writing by David Lewis; editing by Daniel Flynn)