THE CURRENT SITUATION
On August 18 2020, disaffected soldiers led a successful coup against President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta. In custody of military coup makers, President Keïta publicly resigned and dissolved parliament. Calling themselves the National Committee for the Salvation of the People (NCSP), the coup leaders have promised to hold democratic elections soon.
The coup is the culmination of months of public protests (dubbed the ‘June 5 Movement‘). The public is angry at the President for irregularities in the March 2020 election that culminated in the installation of his own candidates. This after the leading opposition leader, Soumaila Cissé, was kidnapped by unknown persons while campaigning 3 days prior to the election. The public is also fed up with rampant government corruption that burst open when a video was released purporting to show the President’s son partying on a luxury yacht. Over recent years, insecurity across the country has increased as violent Islamic rebels fight to secure territory. The COVID-19 crisis has exacerbated the ongoing severe economic hardship. Further, some elements of the Mali Army have been dissatisfied with the manner with which President Keïta handled the 2012 Tuareg rebellion in Northern Mali. In 2017, the Tuareg rebels joined the Mali Army in operations against violent Islamic extremist groups in the country.
Since 2012, Mali has become focus point in Africa for violent Islamic extremists including Jama’a Nusrat ul-Islam wa al-Muslimin (JNIM), al-Qaeda, and the Islamic State.
Mali Empire Timeline: 250BCE-1100 (Ancient History Encyclopedia)
Mali Timeline: 1235-2018 (BBC)
Mali timeline of the northern conflict: 1891-2012 (The New Humanitarian)
Mali Timeline since independence: 1960-2013 (Al Jazeera)
Mali Timeline: 2012-2014 (New York Times)
Mali Crisis Timeline: 2015 (Deutsche Welle)
Mali Timeline: 2012-2020 (Security Council Report)
RECENT NEWS AND REPORTS
Mali protest leader steps back as coup leaders promise election (CBC. Aug 19 2020)
For weeks, Malians protested for change. Then a coup happened. (Al Jazeera. Aug 19 2020)
Malian protesters regroup to demand the resignation of President Keita (France24. Aug 11 2020)
Mali opposition rejects president’s concessions amid stalemate (Al Jazeera. Jul 12 2020)
Sahel: Atrocities by the security forces are fueling recruitment by armed Islamists (Human Rights Watch. Jul 1 2020)
Ibrahim Boubacar Keïtathe strong man of Mali, falters (Le Temps. Jun 30 2020)
African Gold provides accelerated construction timeline for Kobada project in Mali (African Mining. Jun 6 2020)
Out of school, forced to fight: Children pay price for Sahel war (Al Jazeera. Apr 19 2020)
The Sahel: Key things to know as security crisis spirals (Al Jazeera. Feb 27 2020)
‘Badass Librarians’ Foil al Qaeda, Save Ancient Manuscripts (National Geographic. Jun 12 2016)