," you are watching "france 24 with me, claire pryde. gunmen killed at least three people and take many more hostage at the radisson hotel in the malian capital of bamako. holdinterior ministers emergency talks on tightening border checks. this after the killing of the alleged organizer of the paris attacks in saint-denis close to
one of the targets. claire: first to mali, where the radisson hotel in the capital of bamako has come under attack. at least three people have been killed. someone 150 people are being held hostage. earlier, about 50 hostages were released. the state media is saying as many as 80 are now free. according to the military, 10 gunmen stormed the hotel, and the president cut short a trip to chad to deal with this crisis. 24's" luke"france brown -- there has not been a claim of responsibility, i understand. who could be behind this attack?
of peoplee are number who could be responsible for the attacks. the ongoing instability currently has echoes of the situation back in 2012, 2013. back then, that was provoked by the french intervention, a rough coalition of tuaregs and islamist groups. now it is a hodgepodge of different groups, once again, with different alliances, some old and some new. it is shifting. in the past year we have seen a resurgence of violence throughout the country. in march there was the attack in bamako that left five dead. was a restaurant, leaving five dead. a restaurant very popular with foreigners. back then that attack was claimed by an al qaeda affiliate who was the inheritor of a group
that was reactive in 2012 and 2013. there was also an attack in the center of the country. that was on a hotel very popular with claire: u.n. personnel. -- with u.n. personnel. claire: sorry to interrupt, but we will take you live now to comments from francois hollande. francois hollande: generally speaking, in the current context, i ask all our citizens in countries that we know -- to take every precaution. we do not want you to stop want to stopo we countries from being developed. but it is very important to think of security as well.
say a few words about the subject that you are life.sted in, which is the conference on climate change has as its main stake the continuation of future life in better conditions and in safer conditions. before the holding of this important conference on climate maintainedch i have in spite of the difficulties we have had -- and i have made no , as i particularly want an agreement to be reached. this climate change conference will bring together many heads of government and state, over 130, and it has already managed to ensure the participation, the
contribution of all the countries on earth. conference must bring together all the stakeholders involved, hence the meeting today, with organizers, entrepreneurs, organizations, farmers, and so on, to show french agriculture, which had its ups and downs and had experienced a crisis. french agriculture and farming defends the quality, the excellence of the quality. claire: french president francois hollande speaking at a the climateng, conference that is going to be held in paris. it is going ahead despite the paris attacks just a week ago. let's turn our attention back to mali. president francois hollande saying a short time ago that france is doing everything it can to free hostages because as
we were saying at the top of the hour, perhaps more than 100 people are being held at the radisson hotel in amoco. luke -- in bamako. of the security has been involved since the arrival? job: they did a pretty good , quite a good deal of celebration in the wake of the initial operation that they had succeeded in clamping down, stamping out various extremist groups. that appears to have been somewhat overoptimistic, just now after the initial intervention by the french. you are seeing clearly that the french overstretched. they have about 5000 men, not just in mali, but stretched from mauritania, all the way over to niger.
quite a lot of the men are in chad, in the capital of chad there. to clampstruggling down. simply a dozen or so individuals are thought to be involved in this current hostage crisis, so they are also overstretched because of the number of groups. we mentioned the new groups, one links to al qaeda. attack that left 12 dead. a couple of different groups have claimed responsibility. a newer group we had not heard of much before this year, the front for the liberation of messina. that is a new islamist group claiming to want to install sharia around the country. but not the tuaregs. pro-ethnic group,
much closer to the capital than the northern groups are in some have made comparisons between this new group and boko haram, whether they are capable or willing to go to the violence of boko haram. clearly that is the worry. they also have links to mooch out -- to mujao. that is the third groups, perhaps one of the most well-known. its leader just in the past couple of weeks broadcast a message confirmed by the malian authorities that it was the leader. he denounced the peace treaty that fellow tuaregs had been signingg that had been with the regime of the government in bamako. also threatening france and inebrating the attacks
january, the terrorist attacks in january. his group remains very much prominent and active. claire: thank you, luke. we were hearing earlier from president hollande, who has also called on the french people living in sensitive countries to a week afterhis the paris attacks, and as we --e been reporting as a day as ecg is underway -- as a siege is underway at a hotel in the capital of the country, bamako. let me bring in our correspondent. he talks of sensitive countries. which ones could he be referring to? french nationals in many different countries around? >> that's right. and certainly french diplomatic services have to be worried about day in, day out. they are prepared and have contingency plans, but they know that due to france's colonial
past in africa, it stands to reason, it is normal that there are french professionals who in mauritania, in mali come in niger, in chad, some in nigeria, and all of those countries are also countries where jihadist groups have been thriving over the last few years. i could have mentioned more. those are all the countries that francois hollande has in mind. hishe beginning of presidency, france held a record beinge number of citizens held captive abroad. some in syria, many in mali, the country we are talking about today. also it happened in nigeria. so something that france is accustomed to, france knows the danger. but there are economic ties with those countries, which explains you will always have a friend's expatriate community in those countries. certainly one of the targets today -- a french expatriate
community in those countries. there are not many different expatriate, as an as a westerner, you can stay in the malian capital. we know there are security issues there. there have been terror attacks that have been thwarted in bamako recently. so when you go as a westerner, you go to one of those half-dozen, perhaps fewer hotels, such as the radisson blu. pick thisassailants as a target, it means they were ,eliberately choosing a target an expatriate business community, diplomats. there are bound to be some french people in there. there were also some chinese tourists and some staff from turkish airlines. all the internationals are going to be in a hotel like this one. claire: what possible reason could they have, the attackers, for targeting internationals?
>> jihadist groups have been targeting western interest groups in mali for a while. luke was speaking to this. when you look back a few years ago, chronic instability in mali developed into a breeding ground for jihadist groups. luke mentioned a lot of names. the tragedy with mali is that you could mention more. the list of jihadist groups is wrong -- the list of jihadist groups is long. there is an ad and flow -- there is an ebb and flow. some small groups are created claim responsibility for an attack, and then six months later another group appears to be thriving. by and large, it is the same people. to answer your question, to get back to that, jihadist groups have been targeting western interests ever since france came buildingoke up the
jihadist connections in northern mali. they did not forgive france for that. cite, we have heard them the french military intervention as a reason for wanting to attack france, both in mali and on french soil. -- it is not new. french and western interests have been attacked to there before. claire: thank you. this hotel is used by many variousrs, staff of airlines. air france is now saying that the 12 crew were in the hotel at the time of the attack, but they are now safe. turning back to you, luke, you are talking about the general security situation in the country. even though there was an attack it inako in march, isn't the north that is more of a risk of attack then bamako? said, it doeso be
appear to be springing back, the making it extremely insecure. the u.n. forces that are based there very rarely leave the base. they are basically -- they basically have very little choice. it is too dangerous. but it has to be said that it is not being limited to the north of the country. perhaps what we have been thinking has been the case for sometime now, little by little we are seeing the attacks come further south, and they are not necessarily being claimed by the same groups. it is a consequence perhaps of a peace deal very long in the making. tuareg groups over a
number of the tuareg groups, to build some kind of peace and stability, some kind of peace deal for the north. we know now that some of the most prominent islamist groups have refused and have rejected their colleagues who have signed up to it. amongst the tuareg community. that already leaves the tuareg in the north increasingly vulnerable. further south, of course, back in august, the attack in move the -- in mufti that was a surprise. it is where the country narrows, and it is extremely strategic as a major army base, a somalian army base back there. that is what provoked the french intervention 2.5 years ago because they reached a corner just in the region. when they hear that terrorist -- oncettack that area
again, we saw a relatively small attack in bamako earlier this year. this is on a different scale, the attack on the radisson group. i get the impression that throughout this year we have seen the increase in the gravity and the means employed by the various groups. we do not know yet which group is involved, but we are seeing it in the south with more intensity. claire: thank you, luke. francois, what is the latest? francois hollande the latest, the very -- : the air france crew, the 12 people were in the hotel from the air force that from the air france crew, they just got released. as i speak to you, i can see the hostages being freed by malian security forces. still withyou are
us, tell us a little bit more about who normally uses the hotel. we have confirmation of various nationalities -- french, chinese, indian. anymore you can tell us about the nationalities of those trapped inside the hotel? francois: it is quite difficult. they are being brought to another place in the same neighborhood. to speak very quickly to a french woman, who just got released five minutes ago with i could speaknd to one canadian. he told me he had to stay in his room here. he could hear gunshots, he was safe in his room until security forces came to his room and
freed him. people do youny think are still inside the hotel? how many gunmen? changing ases are we speak. it is dozens of hostages that i can see, one hour, one hour and a half, that are released already. the figures cannot be confirmed, but it is at least several dozen. claire: what can you tell us about how the attackers got in? in,cois: the attackers got according to the manager of the hotel, and the security forces and the security ministry, they told me the attackers came with a four by four toyota. i could see it 100 meters from the hotel. it was a four by four, just
parked in front of the entry, all doors open. it had diplomatic plates, so that is why they could get in so easily this morning at 7:00, 7:15, according to the manager. it was known for being one of the most famous places in amico. -- in bamako. claire: how quickly were authorities responding in getting to the hotel? : a few minutes ago i could hear gunshots, and a few minutes before that, there were about 100hots heard meters from the hotel. whatnnot tell what level, level the forces are, but the assault is ongoing as we speak. claire: is it a hotel with security is normally tight?
are there armed guards in front of the hotel? francois: there are several guards. they are the only ones who are allowed to be armed, to carry weapons with them. claire: thank you very much , reporting from bamako, the latest before we go to some other news. security forces in mali moving .nto a hotel we understand dozens of hostages are now being freed. at least three people have been killed, and we will bring you more on that as soon as it comes in. let's turn our attention to it's interior minister, holding emergency talks -- to e.u.'s interior minister, holding emergency talks in brussels. talking about security checks and strengthening the outer borders of the passport free schengen area, after it emerged
that the belgian organizer of the attacks, the suspected organizer, travel undetected from syria to france. >> it is no secret what we want to be agreed upon today. borders of external the european border to be reinforced. we want the power of contacts to be increased. we are talking about securing borders within the e.u. because terrorists are crossing borders in the heart of europe. it is essential that when people are crossing borders, the parties are able to access schengen. that is the only way that we can make sure that returning terrorists are trackable. that way we can neutralize them before they act. ourre: joining me now, european affairs editor. theere just listening to
french foreign minister. interior ministers and justice ministers arrived for this emergency summit. the same they were on page, securing european borders, cutting -- cracking down on the traffic and weapons across the border. all of the things they were talking about, they were already being discussed within the european union. it just appears they are speeding up the decisions on these issues, and it would appear that a lot of the divisions between the different sides -- the passenger name record has really been divided as conservative his -- as conservative. socialist are saying this by get of data collection, because of the passenger name record, it would be that every time you take a flight, your credit card, your travel route, and even what you eat is taken by the airline and sends to this -- and sent to this center.
there are questions as to what benefits you get from taking that privacy from the european population. it would appear today that we inht seeing it speed up decision like that. france also wanted to see a rapid border defense unit in place. we have been asking for that really since the start of this migrant crisis in europe, notably for more security on the greek-turkish border. athens had been against it until now, saying that they as a next owner -- as an external border to the schengen, the national border has been the external border for the european union. we will see if there is any movement on that. but overall it would seem that security is really on everybody's agenda in brussels today. and border security? >> a lot of questions into how this ringleader, as he is being described, of the paris attacks -- he traveled to multiple -- he traveled multiple times.
he traveled to syria multiple times. he was bragging about it and had a restaurant -- he was bragging arrestt and had an warrant out for him. they had not share the information with france. there is a big question on the sharing of intelligence between different nations. france is only aware of his presence within the european union three days after the paris attacks, and they tell us that information came in from a country not even in that 28-nation bloc. some are talking about a common european cia, if you like. trying to get that on board. also people coming back, more perhaps surveillance on french or european people who have become radicalized, traveled to syria to fight. what happens when they come back? should we start with a form of electronic surveillance coming back? >> thank you very much, eve. let's go back to mali, this of seizure ise a
underway at the hotel in the capital of bamako, and forces have moved in. the french is sending -- the 12 air france crew that were taken hostage have been released. it is not entirely clear just how many people are being kept inside by the gunman. earlier the military saying 10 gunmen were involved in storming the hotel, and the latest reports we are getting on the death tolls is that at least three people have been killed. i would like to turn to my guest , dominique. thank you very much for coming in. it has been no claim of responsibility for this attack on the radisson blu in bamako yet. any indication, any idea who could be behind this, who would want to target westerners? it is mainly westerners staying inside this hotel. >> certainly no claim up till now. just after the attack in paris, the head of -- one of the
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