Mali and the Sahel: The war is far from overPosted: May 29, 2014 Filed under: Mali, The Sahel | Tags: Bamako, France, IBK, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, Jean-Yves Le Drian, Kidal, Mali, MINUSMA, Moussa Mara, Operation Serval, Sahel, Serval, Soumeylou Boybeye Maiga, Timbuktu, UN Leave a comment
The humiliation of Mali’s army and government is a rude reminder that the wider region is still a hive of instability
SEVEN weeks ago Moussa Mara was the rising star of Malian politics. Picked by Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, the country’s president, to be prime minister at the age of 39, he had a reputation as a shrewd and capable administrator. An eventual rise to the top seemed possible. When he defied warnings on May 17th and visited Kidal, a hotbed of ethnic Tuareg separatism in the far north-east of the country, he was met by rebel gunfire. This made him a hero to the crowds in the capital, Bamako, for standing up to secessionists seeking to destroy the country’s unity (see map). Read the rest of this entry »
African migrants going to Europe: Taking their chancesPosted: May 15, 2014 Filed under: Mali, The Sahel | Tags: Agadez, Algeria, drugs, EU, Europe, Gao, illegal migrants, insecurity, Lampedusa, Mali, migrants, Niger, Sahara, Sahel, Tamanrasset, trafficking Leave a comment
A new report looks into the ever more busy migration routes from Africa to Europe
FOLLOWING the recent sweep of revolutions in North Africa, the corpses of migrants have washed up with increasing regularity on the region’s shores. This month alone 58 perished, with another 54 missing, following shipwrecks off the coasts of Libya and Greece. Weakened states are less able to police borders, allowing thousands to reach the European mainland. In April, Italian vessels rescued over 4,000 migrants in two days, prompting beleaguered authorities to declare a humanitarian emergency. By some estimates, more than 600,000 people from Africa and the Middle East are currently waiting on north Africa’s shores to embark for a better life.