BAMAKO, Mali – A Mali intelligence official says authorities have arrested a jihadist leader whose group claimed responsibility for an attack on an army base in central Mali that killed at least 17 soldiers.
Modibo Naman Traore, spokesman for Malian intelligence, said Wednesday that Mahmoud Barry, known as Cheikh Yahya, was arrested near the Wagadou forest on Tuesday. He said Yahya has since been taken to Bamako, the capital.
Yahya is from the Peul ethnic group and head of Katibat, which is a part of the al-Qaida-linked Macina Liberation Front, which has been staging attacks in central Mali since 2015.
Two separate organizations linked to the Peul ethnic group claimed responsibility for the July 19 attack that also wounded more than 30 in the city of Nampala.