The birdlife in Mali is diverse. Various species of birds can be found in the country. However, some of these species are getting affected by the pollution and are slowly becoming extinct.
Since fighting broke out in Mali, in January 2012, and against the background of the Sahel food crisis, the ICRC has facilitated the handover of detainees released by the various parties to the conflict. It has also rendered Gao Hospital operational once again.
The ancestor of the Keita clan is said to have come from Mecca. Bilali Bunama was the black companion of the prophet and the first man to call for prayer.
The kings of ancient Mali were of the Keita clan. They were rulers of a chiefdom on the Sankarani River.
The Mali Empire reached its peak in the 14th century under Mansa Musa (r.1312–37), who captured Tombouctou and made Mali a center of Muslim scholarship. Tombouctou and Djenné became key centers for trans-Sahara trade. By the 17th century, however, the empire had ceased to exist, and the Tuareg took much of the northern area.
The recorded history of the area now called Mali begins with the empire of Ghana, which is said to date from the 4th century AD . At its height in the 10th century, it occupied eastern Senegal, southwest Mali, and southern Mauritania and carried on a steady trade across the Sahara with Arab states
Mali has natural resources. It is a major cotton producer, is developing its gold reserves and has some of the richest agricultural land in Africa.
Mali was once the home of the great and rich empires of Ghana, Mali and Songhai. Today 75% of the 10 million population depend on the land for a bare living.
Rule by dictatorship was brought to a close in 1991 by a military coup that ushered in a period of democratic rule. President Alpha KONARE won Mali's first two democratic presidential elections in 1992 and 1997.
The Sudanese Republic and Senegal became independent of France in 1960 as the Mali Federation. When Senegal withdrew after only a few months, what formerly made up the Sudanese Republic was renamed Mali.