Mali: Music banned from the radio in Timbuktu



Music banned from the radio in Timbuktu

Rebels captured the town of 50,000 citizens in northern Mali in April, and since the takeover in April, the Islamists of Ansar Dine, supported by Al Qaeda, have gained the upper hand over the Tuaregs. They are now aggressively promoting their hard-edged brand of Islamic law, Shariah, which means music has been banned from the radio, and women are forced to wear full, face-covering veils.

“Timbuktu has taken on the air of a ghost town. Most stores have closed, and streets are deserted,” Adam Nossiter reported in New York Times. Football, the shaving of beards, television and smoking has also been declared illegal.

“They want to put a veil on everything. They are everywhere, everywhere with their guns,” Mrs. Baba Aicha Kalil told Adam Nossiter. She is a well-known civic activist who still lives in Timbuktu. Adam Nossiter reached her over a crackly telephone line from Bamako, the country’s capital.

According to The Associated Press, Alghabass Ag Intalla, one of the leaders of Ansar Dine (also spelled: Ansar al-Din), signed an agreement with National Movement for the Liberation of the Azawad in the northern town of Gao on 26 May 2012. Alghabass Ag Intalla was quoted as saying:

“I have just signed an accord that will see an independent and Islamic state where we have Islamic law.”

Until then, the two rebel group had been in disagreement because Ansar Dine wanted to impose Shariah law in the area they occupy, while the secular NMLA had been resisting this.




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The New York Times – 2 June 2012:

‘In Timbuktu, Harsh Change Under Islamists’

Latest news on this topic

Google News – continuously updated:

Search: “Mali” + “Ansar Dine” + “music”

Other sources

Magharebia – 4 June 2012:

‘Mali Islamists impose harsh Sharia’

The Salt Lake Tribune – 26 May 2012:

‘Rebel groups merge in Mali, agree on Islamic state ‘

France 24 – 6 April 2012:
‘Tuareg rebel group declares independence of north Mali’

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