ThinkBrigade: Hunger, rebellion, coup: Mali’s crisis has its history

I’m part of the new project ThinkBrigade, which brings together reporters and citizen journalists from around the world to experiment with new forms of collaborative and interactive journalism. This is my first piece for the project, but others will follow: Mali is a landlocked country in West Africa, about two times the size of France. It is dominated by vast expanses of sparsely inhabited desert and the fertile surroundings of the Niger river. In historical times, the area was home to powerful empires and the ancient city of Timbuktu, with its architectural wonders, still tells of this era. Mali is again ...

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The Stream: The crisis in Mali

I took part in The Stream yesterday, an interactive show on Al Jazeera English. Originally I was asked to take part in the live discussion via a Goolge+ hangout, but this did not work due to a crappy internet connection on my side. So instead some of my tweeted comments about the show were shown and discussed. The show was great and very interesting. There were some excellent participants, among them Andy Morgan, so if you didn’t see it yet be sure to watch it! I took part in The Stream yesterday, an interactive show on Al Jazeera English. Originally ...

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Little hope for a peaceful solution in North Mali

Little hope for a peaceful solution in North Mali
Since my last post on Mali, a lot of things happened. The coup has officially ended (though it may not be over yet) and the situation in the North has … evolved, to put it mildly. I will concentrate on developments in the North in this post. As Baz Lecocq has pointed out, we actually know little about what is happening in that region. News are sparse and to my knowledge only one journalist, Salima Tlemçani of the Algerian El Watan, is actually on the ground there. All other journalists and press agencies (me included) get their news from members ...

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Tune in to Al Jazeera tonight

I will be taking part in a discussion on the current situation in Mali on Al Jazeera English tonight. The program is called The Stream and will start at 19:30 GMT. Be sure to tune in! I will be taking part in a discussion on the current situation in Mali on Al Jazeera English tonight. The program is called The Stream and will start at 19:30 GMT....

Artisanal Gold Miners in Burkina Faso [Video]

Last month, I visited a gold mining camp in northern Burkina Faso. Here is a short video from that trip. Around 30 families live in that location and search for gold. The work is fully manual and unbelievably hard. Temperatures here reach 40°C in the shade easily and there is not much shade to begin with. If the miners (both men an women ply this trade) are very lucky, they find enough gold to sell for around 2,000 Franc CFA every few days. That equals about three Euros. Last month, I visited a gold mining camp in northern Burkina Faso. Here ...

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