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Mali Terrain: mostly flat to rolling northern plains covered by sand; savanna in south, rugged hills in northeast;

Natural Resources: gold, phosphates, kaolin, salt, limestone, uranium, gypsum, granite, hydropower

note: bauxite, iron ore, manganese, tin, and copper deposits are known but not exploited;

Natural Hazards: hot, dust-laden harmattan haze common during dry seasons; recurring droughts; occasional Niger River flooding;

Population: 15,968,882 (July 2013 est.)

Profile

Quick Facts About Mali

Population13,796,354 (July 2010 est.)
Age Structure0-14 years: 47.5% (male 3,296,354/female 3,251,277)
15-64 years: 49.6% (male 3,337,547/female 3,503,590)
65 years and over: 3% (male 194,945/female 212,641) (2010 est.)
ReligionsMuslim 90%, Christian 1%, indigenous beliefs 9%
LanguagesFrench (official), Bambara 80%, numerous African languages
Internet Users200,000 (2008)
Country Nameconventional long form: Republic of Mali
conventional short form: Mali
local long form: Republique de Mali
local short form: Mali
former: French Sudan and Sudanese Republic
Government Typerepublic
Capitalname: Bamako
geographic coordinates: 12 39 N, 8 00 W
time difference: UTC 0 (5 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Military BranchesMalian Armed Forces: Army, Republic of Mali Air Force (Force Aerienne de la Republique du Mali, FARM), National Guard (2008)
Dependency Status*
BackgroundThe Sudanese Republic and Senegal became independent of France in 1960 as the Mali Federation. When Senegal withdrew after only a few months, what formerly made up the Sudanese Republic was renamed Mali. Rule by dictatorship was brought to a close in 1991 by a military coup – led by the current president Amadou TOURE – enabling Mali”s emergence as one of the strongest democracies on the continent. President Alpha KONARE won Mali”s first democratic presidential election in 1992 and was reelected in 1997. In keeping with Mali”s two-term constitutional limit, KONARE stepped down in 2002 and was succeeded by Amadou TOURE, who was subsequently elected to a second term in 2007. The elections were widely judged to be free and fair.
Area – Comparativeslightly less than twice the size of Texas
Areatotal: 1,240,192 sq km
land: 1,220,190 sq km
water: 20,002 sq km
Terrainmostly flat to rolling northern plains covered by sand; savanna in south, rugged hills in northeast
Climatesubtropical to arid; hot and dry (February to June); rainy, humid, and mild (June to November); cool and dry (November to February)
Natural Hazardshot, dust-laden harmattan haze common during dry seasons; recurring droughts; occasional Niger River flooding