United Nations: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon has urged the immediate cessation of the renewed violence in northern Mali, which threatens to destabilise the country again.
Ban also called for the establishment of a ceasefire, Xinhua quoted a statement issued by his spokesperson Wednesday as saying.
"The Secretary-General particularly emphasises his concern for the security of civilian populations, and recalls that the protection of civilians is an obligation for all parties," it said. "He condemns the killing of civilians and calls on the perpetrators to be held accountable."
The Malian government has been seeking to restore stability and rebuild in the wake of a series of setbacks since early 2012, including a military coup d'etat, renewed fighting between government forces and Tuareg rebels, and the seizure of its northern territory by radical Islamists.
Albert Koenders, head of the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), on Tuesday briefed the UN Security Council on the latest developments in Mali.
Koenders said there was renewed violence over the weekend in the northern Malian town of Kidal ahead of a planned visit to the region by Malian Prime Minister Moussa Mara.