Mali Issues - 2023


Disputes - international

Mali-Burkina Faso: demarcation is underway with Burkina Faso


Refugees and internally displaced persons

refugees (country of origin): 27,794 (Burkina Faso) (refugees and asylum seekers), 19,547 (Niger) (refugees and asylum seekers), 14,953 (Mauritania) (refugees and asylum seekers) (2023)

IDPs: 375,539 (Tuareg rebellion since 2012) (2023)

Trafficking in persons

tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List — Mali does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking but is making significant efforts to do so; the transition government adopted a national referral mechanism with standard procedures to identify and refer services for victims, increased efforts to prevent armed groups from recruiting child soldiers, and allocated more funding for anti-trafficking; however, Mali did not demonstrate overall increasing efforts to expand its anti-trafficking capacity, in part due to substantial personnel turnover related to the May 2021 consolidation of military power and upheaval of the previous transition government; for the third consecutive year, officials did not amend laws to explicitly define hereditary slavery as a form of trafficking and continued to treat hereditary slavery cases as misdemeanors; despite widespread allegations of complicity in hereditary slavery and forced recruitment of child soldiers, no law enforcement or government officials were investigated; because the transition government has devoted significant resources to a written plan that, if implemented, would constitute significant efforts to meet the minimum standards, Mali was granted a waiver per the TVPA from an otherwise required downgrade to Tier 3, therefore Mali remained on the Tier 2 Watch List for the third consecutive year (2022)

trafficking profile: human traffickers exploit domestic and foreign victims in Mali and, to a lesser extent, Malians abroad; boys from Mali and neighboring countries are exploited in agriculture, artisanal gold mines, domestic work, transportation, begging—sometimes at the hands of corrupt Quranic teachers—and the informal commercial sector; men and boys, primarily of Songhai ethnicity, are subjected to debt bondage in the salt mines of Taoudeni in northern Mali; some members of Mali's Tuareg community are subjected to slavery-related practices, where communities rather than individuals or families exploit the enslaved; women and girls are forced into domestic servitude, agricultural labor, and support roles in gold mines, as well as subjected to sex trafficking in Mali; other women and girls are exploited in sex trafficking in Gabon, Libya, Lebanon, and Tunisia and in domestic servitude in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Tunisia; women and girls lured from other West African countries with offers of jobs in Bamako, Europe, and the United States are exploited locally in sex trafficking; Africans transiting Mali to Europe are vulnerable to trafficking; terrorist organizations and armed groups, particularly in northern and central regions lacking significant government presence, continue to recruit child combatants, and some groups use girls in combat, support roles, or for sexual exploitation; widespread reports implicate officials in corruption and complicity in trafficking and hereditary slavery cases (2022)

Illicit drugs

a transit point for illicit drugs trafficked to Europe; trafficking controlled by armed groups, criminal organizations, terrorist groups and government officials that facilitate, protect and profit from the activity

NOTE: The information regarding Mali on this page is re-published from the 2023 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Mali 2023 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Mali 2023 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 10 Nov 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.