Aqmi appoints new leader to succeed Abdelmalek Droukdel

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According to several specialized websites, al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) has appointed one of its leaders as its head to replace Abdelmalek Droukdel, who was killed in June last year, during a French military operation in northern Mali. The new leader is named Abou Oubéïda Youssef. He is an influential member of AQIM. Our Bamakoa correspondent watched the video announcing the appointment of the new Emir of Aqmi as well as other news.

as reported from Bamako, Serge Daniel

The video, published online by the al-Qaeda Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) propaganda body, reveals the name of its new leader: Abu Obeïda Youssef Al-Annabi.

He is a former influential member of the same jihadist group’s advisory board. It is therefore on familiar ground. Like his predecessor, he is Algerian in nationality. His picture is shown in the document where he, dressed in white, sports a beard in the same color.

The commentator of the photos praises him and repeats more than once that it is really Abu Obeïda who is now in charge and that, in order to highlight the new emir of Aqmi, next to his photo information about his career as a jihadist.

The same propaganda video shows different information about two other people. Thus, al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb reaffirms the death of its former leader, Abdelmalek Droukdel. The latter was killed in June last year by French forces in northern Mali, with the help of the Americans.

The video commentator recites poems in honor of the dead and shows pictures of the same Droukdel, as if they were paying tribute to him.

In the same document, dressed in black, handicraft, we recognize the Swiss hostage Béatrice Stockli, kidnapped in 2016, in Timbuktu, in northern Mali. She speaks but we do not hear what she says. The jihadist group confirms her death.

► To read also: Who was Abdelmalek Droukdel, the leader of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb?

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