PARIS (Reuters) – French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said on Monday he hoped the United States would have the “good sense” not to withdraw its support for French military operations in West Africa, where al Qaeda and Islamic State-linked groups are expanding their foothold.

France has about 4,500 troops operating in the Sahel region.

He also told a news conference he had no new information on three French nationals who went missing last week in Iraq.

Reporting by John Irish; Writing by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Editing by Kevin Liffey

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