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Thirty jets targeted insurgent training and communication centres around Tessalit in a mountainous area.
The French forces are trying to remove insurgents from their last urban foothold in the north, the town of Kidal. Paris's troops captured the airport on Wednesday, but --- contrary to some reports last week --- have not taken the centre of the town from an insurgent group, the MNLA, which is part of the Tuareg people.
Malian Interim President Dioncounda Traore has offered to hold talks with the MNLA to help secure Kidal.