The incident is the latest sign of a flare up in northern Mali, where
U.N. troops trying to broker peace between separatistrebels and forces
allied to the Bamako government are also coming under attack from
Islamist groups operating in the zone.
A spokeswoman for the U.N. mission confirmed that Force Commander
Major General Michael Lollesgaard of Denmark and the police
commissioner, Awale Abdounasir from Djibouti,were in the convoy when
it was hit by the blast.
Radhia Achouri said the two officers were not hurt and she did not
believe they were personally targeted.
"It is yet another attack in the area. They happened to be on that
road at that time," she said,referring to the road between the town of
Timbuktu and Teherdge in the desert north.
A French military intervention inearly 2013 drove a mix of Islamist
forces from the northern towns they occupied the year before. However,
insurgents continue to harass French and U.N. troops with bombings and
Months of peace talks aimed at ending a Tuareg-led separatist
rebellion in the north have stalled, leaving the zone awash with
gunmen and smugglers.
More than 35 U.N. troops have been killed in Mali since the mission
deployed in mid-2013.