The northern Malian Tuareg leader Iyad Ag Ghali has had a long and complex career. He is currently the head of Ansar al Din (Arabic: “Defenders of the Faith”), part of the Islamist coalition that controls northern Mali and a player in negotiations with the Economic Community of West African States. Throughout 2012, as crises have unfolded in Mali, news organizations, analysts, and other actors have profiled Iyad Ag Ghali with an eye towards attempting to understanding the role he plays in those crises, and the role he might play in Mali’s political future. Here are some key English-language biographical resources on the man and his career:
- Wikipedia page.
- At New York University’s The Revealer, Joe McKnight’s four-part series on Iyad Ag Ghali: read part one, part two, part three, and part four.
- BBC (July 17, 2012): “Iyad Ag Ghaly – Mali’s Islamist Leader.”
- France24 (June 29, 2012): “Mali’s Whisky-Drinking Rebel Turned Islamist Chief.”
- AFP (April 5, 2012): “Mali Rebel Iyad Ag Ghaly: Inscrutable Master of the Desert.”
- Foreign Policy (October 22, 2012): “The Man Who Brought the Black Flag to Timbuktu.”
- Peter Beaumont (October 27, 2012): “The Man Who Could Determine Whether the West Is Drawn into Mali’s War.”
- International Crisis Group (July 18 2012): “Iyad Ag Ghali’s Thwarted Personal Ambitions and the Islamist Agenda.” (pp. 12-13 in “Mali: Avoiding Escalation.”)
And a few French-language resources:
- Slate Afrique (April 6, 2012): “Iyad Ag Ghaly, le Nouveau Maître Islamiste du Nord.”
- RFI (July 18, 2012): “Au Mali, Iyad Ag Ghali Cherche à Redorer Son Image.”
- Jeune Afrique (June 7, 2012): “Iyad Ag Ghali, la Charia a Tout Prix.”
What do you make of this man?