News24

Mali's Timbuktu schools re-open

2012-05-07 16:58

Bamako - Administrators and parents say schools have reopened in the city of Timbuktu for the first time since an Islamic faction seized control of the tourist destination last month and is working to impose Shari'ah law.

Mahmoud Djitteye, a member of the school district in Timbuktu, said that a small number of students headed to school Monday. He said that the Islamist faction, Ansar Dine, has agreed to pay the students' school fees.

Alpha Cisse, the father of a student, said that the Islamists are requiring the separation of the sexes in the classroom with boys and girls alternating between morning and afternoon classes. He also said that Ansar Dine has removed certain subjects from the curriculum, including evolution.

Timbuktu fell to the rebels on 1 April. The rebels have since declared independence, plunging Mali into crisis.