Masters of the Land

The ongoing conflicts in Mali are often taken as one and portrayed in relation to religious extremism, irredentism or plain criminality, overlooking tensions arising from changing socio-political relations at the local level. This is particularly true for the Mopti region, in Central Mali, where customary and state institutions clash in an increasing fragile context. Failing to grasp the importance of such developments spells trouble for the legitimacy and impact of security and development programmes in this region.

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