Tony Blair
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Tony Blair: Mali will be 'long hard struggle'

23 January 2013 Last updated at 13:44 GMT

The former prime minister Tony Blair has said that the situation Mali will be a "long hard struggle".

"I do applaud what the French government has done," he said.

He told The World at One presenter Martha Kearney, "If we let Mali be taken over by this extremist and terrorist group there is no way that the problems in Mali will stop at the boarders of Mali."

"Intervention is a problem but non-intervention is also a problem," he explained.

"If the French weren't taking action now... we would have a big problem."