A Malian soldier stands guard in front of a strategic bridge in Markala, approximately 40 km outside Segou on the road to Diabaly, in central Mali, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Fighting raged in one Mali town, airstrikes hit another and army troops raced to protect a third, on Thursday, the seventh day of the French-led military intervention to wrest back Mali's north from al Qaida-linked groups. (AP Photo/Harouna Traore)

Associated Press
A Malian soldier stands guard in front of a strategic bridge in Markala, approximately 40 km outside Segou on the road to Diabaly, in central Mali, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Fighting raged in one Mali town, airstrikes hit another and army troops raced to protect a third, on Thursday, the seventh day of the French-led military intervention to wrest back Mali's north from al Qaida-linked groups. (AP Photo/Harouna Traore)
A Malian soldier stands guard in front of a strategic bridge in Markala, approximately 40 km outside Segou on the road to Diabaly, in central Mali, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. Fighting raged in one Mali town, airstrikes hit another and army troops raced to protect a third, on Thursday, the seventh day of the French-led military intervention to wrest back Mali's north from al Qaida-linked groups. (AP Photo/Harouna Traore)
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