The Origins and Consequences of Tuareg Nationalism

At the beginning of April, after a loose coalition of Tuareg rebel groups forced the Malian army to abandon Timbuktu, one of the armed factions involved in the fighting didn’t lose much time in announcing its ultimate objective: “We, the people of Azawad declare irrevocably the independence of the state of Azawad,” read the communiqué issued by the National Liberation Movement of Azawad — known by its French acronym, MNLA — five days after the ancient city fell. The bold declaration is of course mostly wishful thinking. No state or international organization has recognized the independence of Azawad, as the […]

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