Malian Tuaregs returning home face violence

2016-02-06 19:23
Malian soldiers investigate the area where homes were burned down in Timbuktu. (Baba Ahmed, AP)

Malian soldiers investigate the area where homes were burned down in Timbuktu. (Baba Ahmed, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Timbuktu - Charred timbers are all that remain of a dozen Tuareg homes burned down last week in Mali's northern city of Timbuktu by a mob angry after reports of a gun attack on Malian security forces nearby.

The mob blamed the Tuaregs, who in Timbuktu number about 25 families among some 17 000 Malians who have returned to their homes this year after taking refuge in the neighbouring countries of Mauritania, Burkina Faso and Niger.

In Timbuktu, the returnees are met with distrust, scorn and violence by residents who blame them for the unrest that has enveloped northern Mali in recent years.

Tuareg separatists took hold of Mali's north in 2012 during a coup in the south that caused a vacuum of power. Al-Qaeda-linked militants then took control, staging violent attacks, until they were pushed out of their strongholds by French forces in 2013. Since then the north has remained on edge, with about 10 000 United Nations soldiers and 5 000 Malian troops maintaining an uneasy peace, though extremists and separatists stage occasional attacks.

It was hoped the situation would improve when the government signed a peace accord with the separatists in June.

Read more on:    mali  |  west africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.