In the aftermath of jihadist violence in the Talataye region of north-east Mali, a group of displaced people has sought refuge in the town of Kidal, where they face the harsh reality of starting anew with minimal possessions. The displaced individuals, having fled the brutality of Daesh (ISIS), share their stories of loss and resilience.
Mahamad Almghtar Ag Lahsan, an internally displaced person, describes the devastating impact of Daesh on their lives: "Daesh broke us. They didn't leave us any livestock or household goods; they even took our blankets. They took away everything that was essential to our lives, and they killed many people."
Inawelane Ag Akli, another displaced person, expresses a longing for their own place, where they own and tend to their livestock, emphasizing the significant connection they have with their original homes: "We prefer our own place because we own and tend our livestock, and we have our whole lives there. As for this place, no one owns an animal or anything; we live solely on the mercy of God and the hospitality of the people of Kidal."
The displaced individuals have found shelter in a camp adjacent to the town of Kidal, where they have erected a few basic tents to call home. Their possessions are minimal, enough to survive in their new reality. The journey to Kidal was not easy, as many of them walked for several days through the unforgiving desert to reach a place of relative safety.
Mabrouk Ag Tawad, the coordinator of the humanitarian commission in Kidal, sheds light on the efforts being made to support the displaced individuals: "So we've undertaken a number of actions to help them settle in, and we've done a lot of advocacy to get humanitarian actors to step in and help them." Despite the challenges they face, there is a collective effort to provide assistance and support to those who have been displaced by the ongoing conflict.
The camp in Kidal serves as a temporary haven, where these individuals hope to find solace and support as they navigate the challenges of displacement and work towards rebuilding their futures.