BAMAKO, Mali – Black residents of the tense northern Malian city of Kidal say that the rebels from the lighter-skinned Tuareg ethnic group, who currently rule the city, are planning to expel the city's dark-skinned inhabitants.
Mali has long been divided along racial and geographic lines and the Tuaregs, who consider the north their traditional homeland, have picked up arms multiple times to demand greater rights. Last year, the National Movement for the Liberation of the Azawad, or NMLA, launched a rebellion, seizing Mali's northern half. They still control the city of Kidal.
Ali Cisse, a black resident of Kidal, said the NMLA issued a communique Monday on the radio saying that all blacks that are not known to have been long-term residents of Kidal will be expelled toward the south.