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Slideshow + report: Mali - France

Slideshow: Pro-Azawad demonstrators take Mali's conflict to French parliament

Djitteye Mahamane is with The Association of North Malians and Supporters. He thinks the MNLA declared independence with the aim of controlling smuggling routes across the Sahara.
Djitteye Mahamane is with The Association of North Malians and Supporters. He thinks the MNLA declared independence with the aim of controlling smuggling routes across the Sahara. Rosie Collyer

Mali's stormy politics spilled onto the streets of Paris on Saturday when supporters and opponents of the Tuareg-led National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad state, gathered outside the National Assembly to win the newly elected French government's ear.

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Supporters of the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) gathered outside the French National Assembly in Paris on Saturday.

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After the Socialist victory in this month's parliamentary election, they were calling for the new French government to talk to the breakaway leaders.

In April the MNLA declared northern Mali an independent state, which they call Azawad, after a  coup by a faction of the military destabilised the central government.

Both ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy and current President François Hollande have said they want the country whole.

Members and supporters of The Association of North Malians turned up to oppose the MNLA's attempt to divide Mali.

Where is Azawad?
Anthony Terrade/RFI

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