Tag Archives: mali

Gunfire across the Niger, again

6:40 p.m. GMT: For the first time since the coup last month, we hear the sound of shots coming from the north. So far some heavy machine gun fire and booms. The gunfire lasts about two minutes then falls silent. … Continue reading

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ECOWAS screws the pooch

Last week Mali’s political scene appeared to be moving in the right direction. Prime Minister Diarra’s transitional government was finally named, and the CNRDRE junta in Kati was keeping relatively quiet, having gone several days without arresting anyone. Even the … Continue reading

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Hail the newcomers

On Wednesday, after days of delay, the composition of Prime Minister Cheikh Modibo Diarra’s government was finally announced. Like the prime minister himself, most of the cabinet ministers selected are outsiders to Bamako’s political scene, and could not be easily … Continue reading

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Catch and release

Just a few days ago, many observers outside Mali believed that the CNRDRE junta responsible for ousting President Amadou Toumani Touré (ATT) last month had departed the political scene, having handed control of the state to a civilian government. Events … Continue reading

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On the junta for enemies

On Tuesday we started hearing about the arrests. Former prime minister and presidential candidate Modibo Sidibé was taken from his home Monday night by soldiers and brought to the military base in Kati, where the CNRDRE junta is headquartered. This … Continue reading

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Captain Sanogo stays in the picture

Over the long weekend in Mali (Easter Monday was a day off for schools and offices here), the country’s process of transition from military to civilian constitutional power was officially launched. President Amadou Toumani Touré appeared on state television on … Continue reading

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Heading for the exits

Throughout the troubling events of the last two weeks, I have clung to the belief that Mali’s political crisis will be short-lived. Then last night I got some news that underscored the gravity of the present situation: Peace Corps is … Continue reading

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Ca va chauffer

There’s a French phrase Ca va chauffer — “It’s going to heat up” — that’s useful for so many occasions, especially in francophone Africa. It can describe the sense of an impending competition between two evenly matched rivals, such as … Continue reading

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A tale of two African cities: Bamako and Brazzaville

Post-coup situation update, Monday, April 2: Bamako continues to operate under a veneer of normality, with most businesses and schools open, and both private and state broadcasters airing their regular music and cultural programs. Nobody is fooled by appearances, however: … Continue reading

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Brief update for Friday, March 30

I’m due to resume teaching this afternoon after a two-week hiatus, and I cannot get back to my teaching and research responsibilities while keeping up with events in anything approaching real time on this blog. Even assuming that classes remain … Continue reading

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