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China does not lecture Africa on democracy: Ex-Malian minister

(Xinhua)

11:26, August 12, 2012

DAKAR, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- As opposed to the West, China does not lecture Africa on democracy, Mali's ex-culture minister Aminata Traore said in an interview with Xinhua recently in the Senegalese capital Dakar.

Madam Aminata was in Dakar to give a public lecture on "cultural foundations for African development within the context of global crisis."

"We have witnessed the collapse of our economic and political situation and for the last three decades, our countries have been implementing these economic policies that have considerably worsened the unemployment and poverty situation," Aminata said as she explained the causes of the multiple crises on the African continent.

She mentioned places like northern Mali which is currently under occupation by rebels, and noted that it was the failure of the economic policies that had caused some people who had lost hope in that region to resort to what is now being termed as "terrorism and radical Islam."

The former Malian minister said the African problems should not be looked at in isolation, but rather in a global context.

She questioned how, in a place like Mali, "young people (rebels) can move from Kidal to Timbuktu and finally to Gao?"

"This was just not a failure of the Malian national army," she noted. And this, she said, should make us start questioning the kind of national armies that we have: Why do we always have military coup d'etats in Africa?" she posed.
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