February 10, 2013 |
PARIS - Mud, money, and more security: The U.N.'s cultural agency said Friday that not much more is needed to help rebuild 11 mausoleums that Islamic extremists "totally devastated" in the fabled Malian city of Timbuktu. UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova said she plans to send experts to Mali to assess the full extent of the damage left by al-Qaeda-linked Islamists who ran Timbuktu and the rest of northeastern Mali for months before being chased out by French-led troops. "We have to make an assessment about what the real situation is," said Bokova, who accompanied French President Francois Hollande to Timbuktu on Feb. 2. Of the mausoleums, "there are 11 that are totally devastated," she said.
January 29, 2013 |
SEVARE, Mali - Backed by French helicopters and paratroops, Malian soldiers entered the fabled city of Timbuktu on Monday after al-Qaeda-linked militants who ruled the outpost by fear for nearly 10 months fled into the desert, setting fire to a library that held thousands of manuscripts dating to the Middle Ages. French Col. Thierry Burkhard, chief military spokesman in Paris, said that there had been no combat with the Islamists but that the French and Malian forces did not yet control the town.
July 4, 2013 |
TIMBUKTU, Mali - Islamic radicals destroyed 4,000 ancient manuscripts during their occupation of Timbuktu, according to the findings of a U.N. expert mission. The damage amounts to about one-tenth of the manuscripts being stored in the fabled northern city. The majority of the documents dating to the 13th century were saved by the devotion of the library's Malian custodians, who spirited them out of the occupied city in rice sacks, on donkey carts, by motorcycle, by boat, and by 4-by-4.
April 19, 1992 |
From the top of the Great Mosque's minaret, a crumbling shaft of mud and splintered beams, this legendary desert town seems to be melting in the sun. "They call it the gateway to the Sahara," says Nouh Aginfa Yattara, pointing to the great yellow stretches just to the north. "Of course, it was a much richer city once. " For centuries, the name Timbuktu has symbolized the essence of remoteness, mystery and exotic wealth. It's still remote (only two flights a week from Mali's capital, or a two- day jeep trek through bandit country across the trackless desert)
October 11, 1998 |
Just how long does it take to get from here to Timbuktu? Three hours by plane, or five days by riverboat is what Marcella and I were told, here being Bamako, Mali. "Maybe one week by boat," said the Malian travel agent, "if there are difficulties. " Difficulties? He refused to elaborate, but other survivors told us their own nautical horror stories. "I was sure I was going to die from an acute attack of malaria," recounted friend Tim. "For three days I sat on a porous reed mat next to an overflowing toilet, hounded by bleating sheep and squawking chickens.
July 2, 2012 |
BAMAKO, Mali - Islamist fighters with ties to al-Qaeda have destroyed tombs classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site in Mali's historic city of Timbuktu, a resident and U.N. officials said Saturday. Irina Bokova, who heads the U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, said in a statement Saturday that the centuries-old Muslim mausoleums of Sidi Mahmoud, Sidi, Moctar and Alpha Moya have been destroyed. Resident Ali Yattara said Saturday that the Islamists began attacking the saints' tombs with shovels.
January 31, 2013
Mali collection is reported safe JOHANNESBURG, South Africa - Islamist extremists damaged or stole only a limited number of manuscripts in Timbuktu in Mali before they fled the fabled desert city, a South African university said Wednesday. People in the north Malian city who have knowledge of the documents reported that there was no malicious destruction of any library or collection, said the University of Cape Town, which helped fund a state-of-the-art library to house manuscripts.
July 10, 2012 |
ACCRA, Ghana — In 2009, President Obama visited the infamous Cape Coast Castle here in Ghana. Nine million to 15 million enslaved Africans passed through the "doors of no return" at Cape Coast and nearby Elmina Castle, and three million to five million of them died en route to the Americas. Both places have been designated World Heritage Sites by UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. "We want to thank the people of Ghana for preserving this history," Obama declared.