Fourteen mausoleums in the city of Timbuktu in northern Mali have been rebuilt, three years after they were destroyed by Islamist extremists. The reconstruction was overseen by Unesco.
For most of 2012, armed Islamist groups ruled the region, banning the practice of other religions and desecrating and looting churches and other places of worship. Thousands, including many Christians, fled and found refuge in the south, or in neighbouring countries such as Niger and Burkina Faso.
The loss sustained by Christians across northern Mali amounted to hundreds of millions of US dollars, as World Watch Monitor reported in September 2014. They are still trying to rebuild churches and projects such as a ‘Water Project’ in Timbuktu, set up over 20 years, costing billions, and where all the materials were stolen.