Soldiers killed in land mine blast in eastern Mali
French special forces drive through the city of Gao, Mali on Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
Published Thursday, January 31, 2013 7:43AM EST
SEVARE, Mali -- A Malian military spokesman says four Malian soldiers died and five others were wounded when their vehicle hit a land mine in eastern Mali.
Modibo Traore told The Associated Press on Thursday that the soldiers were killed Wednesday evening in the town of Gossi.
The town is located between the towns of Hombori and Gao, both of which had been under Islamist rule until the French-led military offensive began earlier this month.
The French and Malians have been able to grab back control of the provincial capitals of Timbuktu, Gao and Kidal in a matter of weeks.
However, questions remain about whether the Malian military and its West African allies can hold the cities once the French leave.