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Mali Siege: Another American Killed By Overseas Islamic Terror

Mali Siege: Another American Killed By Overseas Islamic Terror

By by Phil Helsel and Christopher Nelson for NBC News

The American killed in an attack on a hotel in Mali's capital Friday was a former Peace Corps volunteer who dedicated her life to international development, her family said.

Anita Ashok Datar, who was born in Massachusetts and raised in New Jersey, was identified by her family as one of 19 civilians believed killed in the attack on Radisson Blu hotel in Bamako, in which attackers firing AK-47s took more than 100 people hostage.

"We are devastated that Anita is gone — it's unbelievable to us that she has been killed in this senseless act of violence and terrorism," Datar's brother, Sanjeev Datar, said in a statement. "Anita was one of the kindest and most generous people we know. She loved her family and her work tremendously."

An al Qaeda-affiliated terrorist group claimed credit for the attack, Reuters reported.

In addition to the 19 civilians killed, a member of the Malian security services was killed, a United Nations spokesman said. Two attackers were also killed, the spokesman said.

"Everything she did in her life she did to help others — as a mother, public health expert, daughter, sister and friend. And while we are angry and saddened that she has been killed, we know that she would want to promote education and healthcare to prevent violence and poverty at home and abroad, not intolerance," her family said.

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