Watching Mali

This item appears on page 18 of the September 2013 issue.

The US Department of State warns against all travel to Mali because of ongoing conflict in northern Mali, fluid political conditions and continuing threats of attacks and kidnappings of Westerners. 

While the security situation in Bamako remains relatively stable, there are ongoing security concerns and military operations taking place in the northern and western parts of the country. There are still food shortages, internally displaced persons and, in northern Mali, extremist and militant factions.

After the spring 2012 coup and countercoup, some foreign companies, NGOs and private aid organizations temporarily suspended operations in Mali. Many of these have recommenced operations.

Following a Jan. 10, 2013, terrorist offensive and a Jan. 11 military intervention by French forces, a “state of emergency” was put into effect, enabling the government to take extraordinary measures to deal with the crisis in the north. The state of emergency expired on July 6, and groups once again may congregate in open, public locations.