Two French soldiers were killed after their armored vehicle was destroyed by an improvised explosive device on Saturday morning during an operation in the Tessalit region in Mali, the French presidency said in a statement.
“The President of the Republic once again salutes the courage and determination of the French soldiers deployed in the Sahel,” said the statement.
Some 5,000 French troops started Barkhane Operation in 2014 in the Sahel region to help the G5 Sahel countries — Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger — combat extremist insurgents.
France “calls for the establishment without delay of a civil political transition in Mali,” added the statement.
Earlier in August, a mutiny led to the forced resignation of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita of the western African country.