Fighting in Mali's north between Tuaregs and government-allied militia; government urges calm

A spokesman for a Tuareg separatist group says fighting has broken out between its supporters and government-allied militias in Mali's north, despite a peace accord.

Almouzamil Ag Mohamed, spokesman for the Coordination of Azawad Movements, said that they were dislodged from their positions in Edjerer in the Kidal region by the government-allied militias over the weekend. He said the government-allied groups held territory in the Amassine area.

Fahad Ag Mahmoud, a leader of the militia, confirmed the fighting and blamed it on the Tuareg separatists.

Neither side gave casualty figures.

Mali's government late Sunday called for peace. It signed peace accords with armed groups and separatists in May and June.

Mali's north continues to be troubled by attacks by Islamic extremists targeting U.N. peacekeepers and government forces.