The head of an ethnic Dogon militia blamed for a massacre in central Mali is denying that his fighters were involved in the gruesome attack.

Youssouf Toloba also dismissed the Malian president's vow to eliminate the group, because "he isn't the one who created it."

Human Rights Watch has said that Toloba's ethnic militia known as Dan Na Ambassagou has been implicated in scores of attacks in recent months.

Suspicion immediately fell on the group when at least 134 people were slain over the weekend in an ethnic Peulh village.

Toloba maintained in an interview with The Associated Press that he had created the militia because of attacks within his community. He accused the Malian military of being absent during that violence.