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Weapons become the flame of peace in Mali

3000 rifles, kalashnikovs and rocket launchers become the Flame of Peace in Timbuktu, Mali, in March 1996. Rebels voluntarily laid down their arms in exchange for a peaceful integration into civil society. Two years earlier, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) sponsored what was to become a series of meetings in which the government and its international partners were able to hammer out a plan for the socio-economic revival of the North. The linchpin was a major conference in Timbuktu in July 1995, attended by rebel groups, at which a plan for recovery, along with the necessary financing, was tabled. A UNDP-managed trust fund, which drew $3 million from donor countries, was used to help ex-combatants establish new lives. Photo: UNDP, 1996

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Taken on May 31, 2013