Democracy and rights
Mali has had free elections and a functioning
multi-party system since 1992. But a coup in 2012, and
subsequent conflicts with Tuaregic separatists and
Islamist terrorists, has weakened both democracy and
respect for human rights.
Freedom of assembly and association is generally
respected. Permission is required to demonstrate. There
are plenty of NGOs working on issues such as the
environment, women's rights and children's rights. The
law states that civil society should participate in
certain political processes, among other things, they
should be consulted in connection with legislation. Lack
of capacity in the organizational world means that this
does not always work.
Offers a comprehensive list of airports in Mali, including international airports with city located, size and abbreviation, as well as the biggest airlines.
According to a law, 30 percent of the candidates in
elections must be women, as well as in the appointment
of public posts. This law is not always complied with,
for example in connection with municipal elections.
Corruption is illegal but still prevalent in the
judiciary and elsewhere in the state administration, not
least in the form of bribery. There are reports that
police are threatening individuals to get money. In
2019, Transparency International placed Mali as country
130 in its index of corruption in 180 countries (see the
full list here). This was a deterioration of ten
positions compared to 2018. Prior to that, according to
the organization, corruption in Mali had remained at
about the same level since the 2012 coup.
Freedom of expression and media
Mali was long regarded as one of the countries in
Africa where freedom of the press was respected most.
However, during the 2012 coup year, a large number of
journalists were arrested and many were subjected to
abuse and torture by both security forces and militant
The government has been accused of trying to prevent
reporting of abuse in troubled northern Mali, which has
largely been cut off from the outside world.
In general, the media is otherwise free to criticize
the government and other holders of power, and differing
opinions appear in the public debate. There is an
advocacy law that can restrict journalists' freedom, but
it is rarely used.
In Reporters Without Borders Press Freedom Index for
2020, Mali was ranked 108 out of 180 countries (see full
list here). According to the organization, freedom of
the press in the country deteriorated between 2012 and
2016 but has since gradually improved.
Judicial system and legal security
The judicial system should have an independent
position vis-à-vis the state, but the Ministry of
Justice appoints and dismisses judges. There have been
reports of undue pressure from holders of power. There
is a large shortage of trained lawyers.
Legal security is quite high, but corruption and
lengthy legal processes create problems. In northern and
central Mali, courts and other law enforcement
institutions are often absent.
In Mali, human rights have been respected relatively
well, but the deteriorating security situation from 2012
has brought with it an increased number of reports of
abuses against civilians, with arbitrary arrests and
torture even in the south. In the north, Islamist groups
have committed brutal assaults, including rapes,
mutilations and civilian murders.
The conditions in the prisons are reported to be
poor, and the detention times are often long, sometimes
several years. The death penalty is punished for, among
other things, high treason, espionage and murder, but no
execution has taken place for many years.
Mali has a national plan for strengthening human
rights. A department sorting under the Ministry of
Justice is responsible for realizing this.
Attacks against Westerners
Two French geologists are removed from his hotel in the town of Hombori by
unknown perpetrators. This is the first time a kidnapping of Westerners is
taking place south of the Niger River. Later, two German tourists are killed,
and one Swedish and one Dutch are kidnapped in Timbuktu by Aqim.
Parliament votes for constitutional amendments
A large majority (143 yes votes and 3 no votes) accepts President Touré's
draft constitutional amendments, which must now be approved even in a
referendum. The most important changes in the proposal are that Parliament
should have a second chamber (Senate) and that the power of the president be
strengthened at the expense of the prime minister, but that the opportunities to
call the presidential office at the same time are expanded.
Adéma appoints presidential candidate
In accordance with the Constitution, Touré may not run for re-election. The
party appoints the party leader and parliamentary Speaker Dioncounda Traoré as
its candidate. The Union for the Republic and Democracy (URD) elects Soumaila
Cissé, who is also supported by the country's highest Muslim council. Ibrahim
Boubacar Keïta is preparing for Mali Collection (RPM).
Female Prime Minister
Head of Government Modibo Sidibé is replaced by Cissé Mariam Kaïdama Sidibé,
who was previously Minister and President's Adviser. Thus, Mali gets a female
prime minister for the first time. No reason is stated for the change.
Explosion against the Embassy of France
Two people are injured in an attack on France's embassy in Bamako. A Tunisian
man suspected of belonging to Aqim is arrested for the act.