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French soldiers from the 126th Regiment Infantery stand near an... News PhotoAfrica,Armed Forces,Armoured Vehicle,Army Soldier,Conflict,Desert,French Culture,Gao City,Gao Region,Horizontal,Kilometre,Mali,Military,Morning,Occupation,Resting,Shaving,Standing,Towel,War,Washing UpPhotographer Collection: AFP 2013 AFPFrench soldiers from the 126th Regiment Infantery stand near an armoured personnel carrier (VAB) early in the morning on April 8, 2013 some 105 kilometers North of Gao. A French force of 1,000 soldiers in a major offensive has swept a valley thought to be a logistics base for Al-Qaeda-linked Islamists near the Malian city of Gao. Operation Gustav, one of France's largest actions since its intervention against insurgents in January, will involve dozens of tanks, helicopters, drones and airplanes, said General Bernard Barrera, commander of the French land forces in Mali. AFP PHOTO / JOEL SAGET (Photo credit should read JOEL SAGET/AFP/Getty Images)