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Mali Gold Rush Raises Extremism Funding Concerns
Posted on 2020-02-14 19:10:13
A gold rush is underway in an area of northern Mali where al-Qaida-linked
fighters are active, raising concerns that profits from mining could benefit
not only the local economy but also Islamic extremists.

A coalition of armed Tuareg rebels known as the CMA controls the Kidal region
and its leaders oversee the gold-panning activities.

Some CMA members are believed to have close ties to a local al-Qaida
affiliate.

Researchers say members of those groups are playing a role not just in
securing the sites, but also in collecting taxes.

A United Nations panel of experts report in August found that the CMA was
receiving income from checkpoints and taxation related to the gold rush.

The report says experts have been gathering evidence of collusion between
individual members of various armed and terrorist groups.

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