August 13, 2013 |
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- Ibrahim Boubacar Keita won Mali's presidential election after his rival, Soumaila Cisse, conceded defeat late Monday. Cisse visited Keita at his home late Monday to congratulate him, later announcing he had done so on Twitter. "My family and I went and congratulated Mr. Keita, the future president of Mali, on his victory. May God bless Mali," Cisse, a former finance minister tweeted. Cisse's concession of defeat averts the possibility of a disputed result and opens the way for donors to provide $4 billion of promised aid to rebuild the country.
August 13, 2013 |
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa - Ibrahim Boubacar Keita won Mali's presidential election after his rival conceded defeat late Monday in a rare gesture that won praise around the continent. Soumaila Cisse, the opposition candidate, urged Malians to accept the result even as he told reporters at a news conference in Bamako, the capital, he believed there were serious irregularities and incidents of ballot-box stuffing. Cisse said he had not made plans to challenge the result. In Africa's emerging democracies, elections are often flawed and results disputed.
August 2, 2013 |
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- Two former government officials will take part in a presidential runoff election in Mali after a first round of voting in which no candidate won an outright majority, according to provisional results announced Friday. The election is an attempt to usher in stability and peace after a military coup and rebellion saw half the country fall into the hands of Al Qaeda-linked militias last year. Former Prime Minister Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, 69, will face former Finance Minister Soumaila Cisse, 63, in the Aug. 11 vote.
July 29, 2013 |
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- Expectations of Mali's presidential election were so low that everyone was pleasantly surprised when the vote passed peacefully with perhaps half of eligible voters participating. With security tight at polling booths Sunday, there were no violent attacks despite threats from an Al Qaeda-linked militia, the Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa. And, with the country's peace and stability at stake, the 50% turnout estimated by European Union observers was higher than past election turnouts of around 40%. Turnout in the country's troubled north, however, was lower.
June 18, 2013 |
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- Mali's government reached a peace deal Tuesday with Tuareg fighters who rebelled last year and seized most of the country's north. But the deal does not resolve the West African nation's conflict with separate Islamic militias linked with Al Qaeda that are still plaguing the region. After taking control of the north, the Tuareg rebels of the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad, or MNLA, were swiftly outflanked by the militias, which grabbed control of key northern towns last year, imposing a severe form of Islamic law, or sharia . The Tuaregs, who been struggling for decades for an independent state they call Azawad, subsequently distanced themselves from the Islamists.
June 5, 2013 |
Who exactly is the enemy in the continuing U.S. war against terrorism? In some cases, the answer is: It's a secret. When the United States began its war against Al Qaeda after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the identity of the enemy was clear: Osama bin Laden and his followers, and the Taliban who protected them in Afghanistan. Congress quickly passed a resolution authorizing President George W. Bush to use "all necessary and appropriate force" against anyone who "planned, authorized, committed or aided" the 9/11 attacks, plus anyone who harbored them.