Luis Ramirez
October 24, 2012

Pentagon officials on Tuesday neither confirmed nor denied reports that secret talks are under way between the United States and France on plans to bring northern Mali back under the control of the country’s central government.

U.S. efforts to wrest control of much of northern Mali from Islamist militants have centered on enabling Washington’s partners in the region to win back control of the territory – and not by sending in U.S. troops to do the job.

News reports this week say France is sending in drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles, to do surveillance missions – something Pentagon officials say the United States has been doing for several months.

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