At least 17 soldiers and four civilians were killed Sunday in an attack in a border zone between Mali, Burkina Faso, and Niger, Mali’s army said.
22 troops were injured while nine other soldiers are missing, the army said late Monday, adding that the toll could still rise.
The army had blamed the attack on “terrorists” in an earlier announcement late Sunday, using the term it typically uses for jihadists.
It had said its troops had been repelling an attack by the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (ISGS) group, affiliated with the Islamic State organisation.
The previous death toll was four soldiers and two civilians.
The two civilians killed were local elected officials, their relatives told AFP.
The army said Monday it killed seven from the attacking side, “likely” from the ISGS group, adding that there was “an unknown number of dead and injured carried away by the attackers”.