04 Jun 2021

African Union suspends Mali after military coup and threatens sanctions

Mali’s membership in the African Union has been suspended after last week’s military coup. The Union threatened sanctions if a civilian-led government is not restored. Last week the military arrested Bah Ndaw, interim president, and Prime Minister Moctar Ouane. These arrests derailed a transition to democratic elections after the previous

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26 May 2021

Mali’s vice president ousts president and prime minister from office, assumes power

On Tuesday, Mali’s transitional vice president Assimi Goita stated that he had removed the transitional president and prime minister from power, assuming the role of the top government official in the country. The announcement confirmed reports from several international groups that the leaders had been ousted by another member of

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06 May 2021

French journalist kidnapped in Mali pleads for help in video

Last month, a French journalist named Olivier Dubois disappeared while traveling in Mali. In a video that emerged yesterday, Dubois stated that he had been kidnapped by a jihadist group affiliated with al Qaeda that calls themselves JNIM, which stands for the Group for the Support of Islam and Muslims.

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26 Feb 2021

Several soldiers killed in central Mali attack

A military official has said nine soldiers have been killed near the central Malian town of Bandiagara. The death toll had previously been stated as eight after the attack on a gendarmerie post Thursday night. Nine more Malian soldiers were also injured, five of them seriously after a long exchange

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09 Oct 2020

French hostage Sophie Pétronin released in Mali after 1,381 days in captivity

After nearly four years in captivity, a French aid worker named Sophie Pétronin has been released in Mali. Pétronin was kidnapped in 2016 at the age of 72 while running a charity for children in Gao, Mali, who were suffering from malnutrition. Pétronin was captured by Islamic extremists and was

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21 Aug 2020

Mali coup leader was trained by U.S. military, officers say

Colonel Assimi Goita, the Malian who staged a coup against the sitting president, who exited office peacefully, worked with US Special Operations. Officers state that Goita was trained by US military forces, including the US Army. Goita and several others marched to the President’s quarters and forcibly removed him from

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27 Mar 2019

Mali’s security crisis: A cycle of exploitation and corruption

Analysts are warning that the recent massacre of around 160 members of the predominantly Muslim Fulani herding community in central Mali is part of a security crisis in the country and the broader Sahel region. Over the past few years, militant groups linked to al-Qaeda have terrorized parts of Mali

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22 Oct 2018

The role of women in West Africa’s violent extremist groups

A recent publication from the Institute for Security Studies has examined the role that women have played in West Africa’s violent extremist groups. Ranging from their abduction and use as a tool to entice men to join extremist ranks to willing participators in activities from operations and suicide attacks, their

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30 Jul 2018

Violence disrupted vote in a fifth of Malian polling stations

“Armed attacks or other violence” disrupted voting at 4,632 of the 23,000 polling stations on Sunday’s election in Mali, while 644 polling stations were completely unable to operate. The country continues to reel from insecurity driven by jihadist violence, and elections continue to be prime targets for destabilizing actors in

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20 Jul 2018

UN: In West Africa and the Sahel, signs of democratic progress amid continued ‘devastating’ violence

The UN has announced progress in building democratic institutions in Western Africa, although these gains remain in competition with the ongoing threat of terrorism and terrorist groups. Increasingly, violence pitting farmers against herders has become a leading threat in many areas, in addition to the well-known conflicts driven by groups

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