Mali Rebel Factions Agree to End Hostilities Ahead of Sept Talks

Reuters reports from Ouagadougou that Mali rebels have agreed to end their hostilities as formal talks with the Malian government approach. Should this deal last, it could represent a major milestone for Mali’s future:

Reuters AfricaRepresentatives of two platforms of rebel groups from northern Mali agreed on Thursday in the Burkinabe capital Ouagadougou to end hostilities and present a united front for talks with the Malian government in Algeria in early September.

In recent months, there has been fighting between the Tuareg-led National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) and the Arab Movement of Azawad (MAA), and even clashes between rival MAA factions.

Mali’s northern desert region – called Azawad by the Tuareg rebels – has risen up four times in the last 50 years, with various groups fighting for independence or self-rule. The last uprising in early 2012 prompted a coup in the southern capital, Bamako, and allowed Islamist groups to seize northern Mali…[Full Story]

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