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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Is genetically modified cotton really the new “white gold”?

Is genetically modified cotton really the new
In an interview with Jeune Afrique (French) Jean-Paul Sawadogo, the head of the national textile association of Burkina Faso, “Sofitex”, touts the advantages of genetically modified (GM) cotton.  Burkina Faso has been the first (and so far only) West African country to allow GM cotton onto domestic fields ten years ago. By now, GM cotton is something of the norm in international cotton production. In 2009, 49% of the worldwide total area planted with cotton used GM cotton. As countries like the USA and Australia grow almost exclusively GM cotton and have a high productivity, one can safely assume that well ...

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