URGENT ¥¥¥ Major explosion heard near Gao, northern Mali: AFP

A major explosion was heard late Saturday from the northern Malian city of Gao, which French-led forces recently recaptured from the Islamists, an AFP correspondent reported.

The blast went off at around 11:00 pm (2300 GMT) and a French military source said it had happened some 10 kilometres (six miles) away from the French military base at the city's airport.