Niger's President Mahamadou Issoufou is appealing for help for his country. It's contributed several hundred troops to the fight against Islamist militants in Mali. That's costing money Niger cannot afford.
West African storytellers still sing the praises of Sunjata Keita today. Crippled as a child, he overcame his disability to unify the fragmented kingdoms of the region, creating the vast medieval Mali Empire.
The international journalists' network ICIJ has evaluated secret documents and has come to the conclusion that West African countries lose millions in unpaid taxes because the money is diverted elsewhere.
Whether in Mali, Niger or Nigeria, the nomadic Fulani herders often find themselves in conflict with farmers over scarce resources. But there is more to it than that: Often it becomes a struggle for political supremacy.
For the second time in two days, Tuareg groups have reported an attack near the Niger border. Large tracts of the country remain lawless despite a peace accord signed with ethnic Tuareg leaders.
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