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Ethnic Conflicts,Extremism and Security Situation in Mali

Chen Along;School of International Politics and Economics,University of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences;  
Ever since the Arab Spring took place in 2011,the internal ethnic issues in Mali have triggered armed conflicts,mainly represented by the Tuareg rebellion in the north and the herder-farmer conflicts in central Mali. Those conflicts are the results of multiple interacting factors including natural,geographical,social,historical,economic,political and cultural ones. Extremist groups in Mali and bordering countries have conducted complicated and volatile interactions with various actors in the conflicts,as well as establishing various and broad alliances in the local power struggle. The improper policies adopted by the Malian government in tackling ethnic conflicts intensified the conflicts and pushed individuals of certain ethnic groups towards extremist groups. As a result,central Mali is facing a dangerous situation where the Fulani are regarded as terrorists and extremists. Mali will face more tough challenges on its road to realize peace and reconciliation among different ethnic groups.
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