Mali

Mali Rebels Push South

Fighting is now only 250 miles from the capital

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Islamist rebels chased Mali's army from a garrison town deep in its own territory on Monday, striking back at the weakest link in a nascent coalition after French fighter jets hit militant bases deep in the Sahara.

The surprise move by what witnesses called a well-armed rebel force highlights the risk that the French campaign in Mali could widen as al Qaeda militants spread across the heart of the world's largest desert.