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Page last updated at 10:02 GMT, Monday, 27 August 2012 11:02 UK

Fear, conflict and starvation in Mali

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The drought in one part of West Africa has become so bad that nearly five million people are facing severe food shortages in one country alone.

In Mali, two-thirds of the country has been taken over by Islamists, some of whom have links with al-Qaeda.

A new unity government announced last week might have ended months of fractious rule after an army coup in March; but with pressure building for military action to retake the north, and food supplies at rock bottom, most people simply have their eyes on survival.

Mike Thomson reports from Mali.


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