UK military flies Ghana troops, equipment to Mali

Last Updated: Thu, Feb 14, 2013 18:15 hrs

Britain's military has flown troops and heavy equipment from Ghana to Mali to support the international intervention in the West African nation, the defense ministry said Thursday.

A C-17 aircraft is carrying more than 120 members of a Ghanaian engineering company with vehicles and equipment to Bamako, where they will build accommodation and assist with projects like road building as part of the African-led support mission to Mali, the ministry said.

It added the request from Ghana for a C-17 was made earlier this week, with the first C-17 flights taking off Monday evening and continuing on through the week.

The Ghanaian engineering company will "be there as long as it takes to solve the problem," according to Col. M'Bawine Atintande, public relations director for the Ghana Armed Forces.

He praised the U.K. for giving "so much support" in a statement released through Britain's defense ministry.

Peter Jones, Britain's High Commissioner to Ghana, said the U.K. was pleased to offer the transport capability to Ghana, calling it "a moment where the international community is coming together for a shared challenge."

In addition to providing logistical support and aircraft to support the French-led intervention in Mali, Britain has said that it will contribute to an EU training mission to support the Malian army and provide trainers to help prepare an African-led intervention force.

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