Christians, Muslims, and followers of traditional African religions lived peaceably in Mali for centuries, until war erupted in 2012. Tuareg rebels, aiming to establish an independent Islamic state in northern Mali, formed an alliance with radical Islamists. Jihadists quickly gained control, and hundreds of thousands were forced to flee.
Mali has offered an example of a well-functioning dialogue between Christians and Muslims for the whole of West Africa. But the Malian form of Islam is a more tolerant one. This is continuing but since 2008 we have been observing a gradual Arabization of Islam, and this makes the situation overall more difficult.