Mali attack
[Representational Image] At least three soldiers were killed when gunmen attacked a checkpoint southwest of Malian town of Timbuktu. Picture: Malian soldiers stand guard at a checkpoint in Diabaly, Mali, Jan. 21, 2013.Reuters

At least three soldiers were killed and two others injured when unidentified gunmen attacked a checkpoint in Mali, a soldier reportedly said on Wednesday.

The attack took place in the night in Lere, southwest of Mali's Timbuktu town, Reuters quoted the soldier, who did not wish to be named, as saying.

A spokesperson of the ministry of defence confirmed the attack, but refused to reveal any details. 

Several attacks have taken place in Mali this year, including those on the United Nations' bases. Two UN peacekeepers were killed Feb. 12 in an attack on peacekeeping base MINUSMA in the town of Kidal in northern Mali.

Earlier on Feb. 5, attacks took place at a UN police base and an army checkpoint in two different parts of northern Mali. Some soldiers had sustained injuries.

No group had claimed responsibility for any of the attacks, however, Islamist groups, like al Qaeda, in the Islamic Maghreb have reportedly been held responsible for several attacks on the Malian army and the UN bases.

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