9 dead in clashes with Islamic extremists in north Malian city of Gao

Mali's military says that nine people were killed when Islamic extremists belonging to the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa infiltrated the north Malian city of Gao over the weekend.

A military statement Sunday says a dozen fighters entered the city on Saturday and took refuge in the Quatrieme and Chateau neighborhoods, before being pushed back by the Malian military with the help of French and Nigerien forces. It says the shooting continued through Sunday. The dead include four extremists, one soldier and four civilians.

Gao was liberated in January by French forces, who launched an intervention to push back the al-Qaida-linked groups occupying the country, including MUJAO. The Islamic rebels have taken cover in nearby, and this weekend marked the third major attack on the town.