A republic in West Africa. Formerly the French Sudan, Mali joined Senegal in 1959 to form the independent Federation of Mali. Senegal withdrew from the federation in 1960, and Mali, which called itself the Sudanese Republic during its union with Senegal, proclaimed its independence as the Republic of Mali. Mali maintained a carefully neutralist policy until 1968, accepting economic aid from both the Western and communist blocs. After 1968, Mali followed a pro-communist foreign policy under President Amadou Toumani Traore, until his ouster in 1991. Famine in 1973-74 and drought in the 1980s have plagued the country.
FEDERATION OF MALI
1921-1944 and 1894-1899
For period 1944-1959 see Benin, French West Africa
SENEGAMBIA AND NIGER