Donors Back Offensive against Extremists in Mali

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Donors from a conference held by the African Union have pledged more than $450 million and equipment to help fund the military push against Islamic extremists in Mali.

They say $960 million is needed to fund the Mali campaign. A lack of money and troops has slowed down the French-led offensive.

The United Kingdom pledged to send as many as 40 military trainers to work with the African army.

Meanwhile, a U.S. military official said the Pentagon is considering setting up a drone base in Niger, Northwest Africa to increase intelligence collection.

The base would be used to collect greater intelligence on Islamic militants in the area.

American troops are already training local forces in Niger. But greater presence and drone operation there would position the U.S. to provide more help in the fight against extremists in neighboring Mali.

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