What is Mali famous for? Interesting facts about Mali

The African country of Mali is not the place to be for a well-deserved vacation. An unstable political situation, general poverty, sky-high levels of corruption, and other factors keep this state on the list of the least prosperous on the planet.

Global problems are shaking the country one after another, and no improvement is visible on the horizon so far.

Facts about Mali

  • A large part of this troubled state is controlled by the forces of several radical organizations, which are considered terrorists by the world community.
  • In the XIII-XVII centuries, the powerful Empire of Mali was located here. The modern name of the country is a reference to those times.
  • Mali is home to about 20 million people. This is about 3.5 million less than Shanghai, the most populous city in the world, which is located in China.
  • The first people appeared on the territory of Mali around the beginning of the 4th millennium BC. And after only a thousand years after that, they have already begun to master the basics of agriculture.
  • During his time as a colony of France, these lands had a different name – French Sudan. The French language is still one of the two official languages.
  • Many buildings in Mali are made of mud bricks. They do not differ in strength since these bricks are fired simply in the sun and not in a furnace.
  • There is a lake called Afou, which is considered sacred by the locals. Even fishing in it is allowed only one day a year, during a special holiday.
  • The Malian town of Niono stands on the water, and it is all permeated with numerous channels and canals. True, it’s still not very similar to Venice.
  • In 1968, 1991, 2012, 2020, and 2021, there were military coups in Mali. The last of them completely cut off the already meager flow of tourists from the country, depriving it of another source of foreign currency.
  • The great honor of the Malian territory can be called flat as a table. About 90% of the land here falls on an endless plain with sparse vegetation.
  • There is only one university in the whole country. It was even closed for a very non-trivial reason – the lack of people wishing to get an education for a long time.
  • The total number of the Malian army does not exceed 7,500 people.
  • In terms of population growth rates, Mali is one of the first in the world. And this is despite the fact that, due to the rudimentary medicine in the sad ranking of infant mortality, this country ranks fourth in the world.
  • The average life expectancy in Mali is only slightly over 50 years. According to this parameter, the country is not even included in the top 200 states of the world.
  • Mali is officially a secular Muslim state. But almost the entire population here is extremely religious, which the Malians are very proud of.
  • According to statistics, just over a third of the population here lives far below the poverty line.
  • Mali ranks first in Africa in the production and export of cotton.
  • The only famous Malian writer, Yambo Ouologuem, once received the prestigious Renaudot Prize for Literature in France. But soon, she was recalled back, as it turned out that the book for which he received this award, ‘Le devoir de violence’, “borrowed” from the British writer Graham Green, passing it off as his own.
  • In rural Mali, the monthly salary hovers around the $50-60 mark. This country has long been included in the list of the poorest in the world.
  • The name of the Malian capital, Bamako, is translated from the local Bambara language as “river of crocodiles”. There are really a lot of crocodiles here, and the trinity of these reptiles is even depicted on the capital’s coat of arms.

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