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On the Margins Roundup (October)

[Zakaria Abdillahi, president of the Djibouti League for Human Rights, speaks to the International Federation for Human Rights on the repression of protests in Djibouti. Screenshot from Youtube.] [Zakaria Abdillahi, president of the Djibouti League for Human Rights, speaks to the International Federation for Human Rights on the repression of protests in Djibouti. Screenshot from Youtube.]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Mali, South Sudan, Somalia, Mauritania, Djibouti, and Comoros Islands and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the On the Margins Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each month's roundup to]  


Watch the Trailer for Mauritania's First-Ever Oscar Submission 'Timbuktu' Abderrahmane Sissako's drama about Al Qaeda militants taking over a town in 2012 premiered during the Cannes Film Festival.

Question et guerre du Sahara mauritanien The early days of the Polisario Front as viewed through French diplomatic correspondence.

Mauritania uncovers ISIS cell ISIS jihadists come from a variety of different countries, including Mauritania, where four sympathizers were arrested on 12 October.

Mauritania, Morocco bolster security ties Morocco and Mauritania, which share a long mutual border, are vowing to step up security collaboration. 

The Eye of the Sahara Is An Enigmatic Desert Landmark The Richat Structure in Mauritania as seen from the International Space Station. 

Plaidoirie sur l'esclavage déguisé en milieu Soninké de Kaedi et de Djéol A plea against disguised slavery by the Soninké in Kaedi and Djéol.

Noura Mint Seymali wants to modernise the sounds she grew up with Moorish music has not received the love it deserves. Mauritanian musician, Noura Mint Seymali is trying to change that.


Somalia's Firsts The last two years have seen big changes in Somalia, BBC Somali's Abdullahi Abdi reflects on what these "firsts" say about a country and people that has experienced years of uncertainty.

A Safe Harbour A short documentary about the Somali sailor's community in Cardiff, Wales.

Excursive Interview with Neil Wigan British Ambassador to Somalia "Our good relationship with Somaliland is not with expense of Somalia."

The imminent prospect of Somalia attracting huge investment Somali government says the country is on the imminent prospect of attracting huge investment after the president's meeting with MEDEF in Paris. 

An inspiring book fair, a raft of challenges In Somaliland, a novelist is berating the audience at the Hargeisa International Book Fair over what he sees as the inherent cruelty of Somali society. 


Sudan, Djibouti and Kenya set to benefit from Ethiopia’s power supply  Ethiopia has connected its power grid with Djibouti in order to supply cheaper and cleaner hydropower processed electricity.

Always from Afar: Marginalization, Territory, and Conflict in the Afar Triangle The authors explore two of the ethnic groups involved in some of the most visible conflicts in Djibouti, the Issa-Somali and the Afar. 

Interview with Zakaria Abdillahi, President of the Djibouti League for Human Rights Zakaria Abdillahi speaks with the International Federation for Human Rights on the authorities' repression of protests in Djibouti following elections.

Comoros Islands

Comoros uneasy with France over Mayotte “Everything in Mayotte, the history, culture, religion and even way of life is just simply Comorian, apart now from the illegal French government.” 

France’s Indian Ocean prize “Mayotte is part of Comoros. Decolonization means colonization is supposed to stop. We cannot be four islands, and then become three.” 

‘Huge gaffe’ sparks row between Libya, Iran in Comoros “It is more than an unpleasant situation or a misunderstanding,” a foreign ministry official said, requesting anonymity. “It is a huge gaffe.”


The First African Ebola Vaccine Is Being Tested in Mali Three Malian health-care workers have become the first recipients of a new, experimental Ebola vaccine in Africa's first-ever trial of this kind.


Mali : vaste opération de l’armée française à Kidal French reports say arms seizures in northern Niger included an SA-7 system that may have been operational.

Alger: 3e partie des négociations pour le dialogue inter-malien New round of Mali negotiations begins in Algiers, but will the result be any different from the past? 

Largest Justice Needs and Satisfaction Survey Ever Conducted in Africa "This report gives us, for the first time, a broad and comprehensive view of the justice needs of the citizens of Mali."

Women Beyond the Veil in Mali A photographer traveled throughout northern Mali speaking with women who with varying experiences during their lives in Mali.

La guerre expéditionnaire française au Mali vu par la Rand Corporation “France's War in Mali: Lessons for an Expeditionary Army.”

South Sudan

South Sudan nearly shoots itself in the foot An edict the South Sudan ministry of labor issued caused international havoc by telling all foreigners working in the country to leave within a month. 

Four Questions with US Special Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan US Special Envoy for South Sudan discusses recent political developments, and articulates US policy toward the country.  

The role of social media in the South Sudan crisis A study of social media use during the recent crisis in South Sudan suggests that social media was instrumental in facilitating violence.

When will the Peace Process move beyond delays and deadlocks? The lethargic pace of the peace process is foremost a consequence of the parties’ belief that victory can be obtained on the battlefield. 

Caught in the Crossfire  Child soldiers in South Sudan have few alternatives.

China Deploys Troops to Defend Oil Fields This marks a sharp escalation of China’s efforts to ensure the safety of its workers and assets and guarantee a steady flow of energy for domestic consumption.

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