The one minute summary on Mali

This is it: one minute to the best info on Mali. This info alone will put you ahead of 99% of foreigners visiting Mali, garner the admiration of the locals who will instantly want to be your friends, and the envy of your fellow travelers. Read on. You’ll make friends faster that way, become a traveler instead of simply being a tourist, and also enjoy your travels a lot more.

Mali photo

Photo by emilio labrador

The Sudanese Republic and Senegal became independent of France in 1960 as the Mali Federation. When Senegal withdrew after only a few months, what formerly made up the Sudanese Republic was renamed Mali. Rule by dictatorship was brought to a close in 1991 by a military coup that ushered in a period of democratic rule.

President Alpha KONARE won Mali’s first two democratic presidential elections in 1992 and 1997. In keeping with Mali’s two-term constitutional limit, he stepped down in 2002 and was succeeded by Amadou Toumani TOURE, who was elected to a second term in 2007 elections that were widely judged to be free and fair. Malian returnees from Libya in 2011 exacerbated tensions in northern Mali, and Tuareg ethnic militias started a rebellion in January 2012. Low- and mid-level soldiers, frustrated with the poor handling of the rebellion overthrew TOURE on 22 March.

Intensive mediation efforts led by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) returned power to a civilian administration in April with the appointment of interim President Dioncounda TRAORE. The post-coup chaos led to rebels expelling the Malian military from the three northern regions of the country and allowed Islamic militants to set up strongholds. Hundreds of thousands of northern Malians fled the violence to southern Mali and neighboring countries, exacerbating regional food insecurity in host communities.

An international military intervention to retake the three northern regions began in January 2013 and within a month most of the north had been retaken. In a democratic presidential election conducted in July and August of 2013, Ibrahim Boubacar KEITA was elected president in the second round.

That was it. I promised one minute.

For other condensed info check also my other posts on local culture (don’t make the mistakes I made), local food or local drinks. And when you call your friends to tell them you were by far the most knowledgeable at the party, do that with confidence that you’ll not get hit with a 6.99 per minute bill. You’ll also pick the local food from the tray, and order a local drink with confidence.

  1. Cultural Mistakes To Avoid in  Mali
  2. Does my current phone work in  Mali ? Tips to cell phone usage in  Mali
  3. Local food you should try in  Mali and No miss drinks in  Mali

Now, cheers to the most Mali aware person at the cocktail party.

What are the key history moments for Mali?

Mali was once part of three famed West African empires which controlled trans-Saharan trade in gold, salt, slaves, and other precious commodities. These Sahelian kingdoms had neither rigid geopolitical boundaries nor rigid ethnic identities. The earliest of these empires was the Ghana Empire which expanded throughout West Africa from the 8th century until 1078.

The Mali Empire later formed on the upper Niger, and reached the height of power in the fourteenth century. Under the Mali Empire, the ancient cities of Djenné and Timbuktu were centres of both trade and Islamic learning. The empire later declined, ultimately being supplanted by the Songhai Empire. The Songhai people originated in current northwestern Nigeria.

In the late 14th century, the Songhai gradually gained independence from the Mali Empire and expanded until eventual collapse largely due to a Moroccan invasion in 1591. The fall of the Songhai Empire marked the end of the region’s role as a trading crossroads. Following the establishment of sea routes by European powers, the trans-Saharan trade routes lost significance. In the colonial era, Mali fell under the control of the French beginning in the late 19th century. By 1905, most of the area was under firm French control as a part of French Sudan.

In early 1959, Mali (then the Sudanese Republic) and Senegal united to become the Mali Federation and gained independence from France on June 20, 1960. Senegal withdrew from the federation in August 1960, which allowed the Sudanese Republic to form the independent nation of Mali on September 22, 1960.

The one minute summary for Mali geography

Best places to see in Mali

The Great Mosque The Great Mosque is made completely of mud, was made in 1906, and it has five stories and three towers. Every spring the people replaster the Mosque. Regretfully, entrance to non-muslims is not allowed. Apparently this prohibition is a consequence of a fashion photo-shoot more than 10 years ago, which was regarded by the locals as “pornographic”.