BAMAKO, Mali — Witnesses say at least 15 people died in a stampede in a Timbuktu mosque during services celebrating the birth of the Prophet Muhammad.
Timbuktu resident Dicko Abdramane said he was at the local hospital this morning and saw at least 15 bodies. He said the majority of the bodies he saw were of young girls.
Witness Diadie Haidara said his niece died in the Thursday night stampede at the Djingareyber mosque. He said he also saw many people who suffered injuries.
The people had gathered at the mosque to celebrate the Malian festival of Maouloud.
Timbuktu — also called Tombouctou — is in north-central Mali and was once at the end of an ancient trade route. It was once the seat of Islamic learning in the West African nation.