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Last Updated: Wednesday, 27 August, 2003, 14:59 GMT 15:59 UK
Many die in Mali sectarian violence

At least 10 people have been killed in clashes between rival Muslim groups in western Mali.

Several people were also wounded in the violence in the village of Yerere.

It began on Monday, when Wahhabi Sunnis building a mosque were attacked by followers of a more traditional strand of Islam in Mali.

About 85% of people in the country follow some form of Islam - ranging from secular moderates to stricter followers like the Wahhabis.

"You could say this is basically a religious clash," an interior ministry's official told Reuters news agency.

"The Wahhabi decided to build a mosque and had all the necessary authorisation. The others were opposed," the official added.

An investigation is under way.

"The inquiry will tell us about the deeper causes of the conflict - especially as the village of Yerere already has seven mosques," the official said.

Two of those wounded are said to be in a critical condition.




SEE ALSO:
Analysis: Inside Wahhabi Islam
30 Sep 01  |  Middle East
Country profile: Mali
06 Mar 03  |  Country profiles
Timeline: Mali
04 Mar 03  |  Country profiles


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