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Veiled Tuareg man waving to the camera, Libyan desert

Salam Aleikoum! Libyan desert

The Tuareg are a Berber nomadic pastoralist people, sometimes called the « blue men » because the indigo pigment in the cloth of their traditional robes and turbans. The tagelmust (also known as cheich or cheche) is the most famous Tuareg, an often indigo blue-colored veil. The men's facial covering originates from the belief that such action wards off evil spirits. It may have related instrumentally from the need for protection from the harsh desert sands as well.. Their way of life is based on livestock breeding, trading, and agriculture. They are the principal inhabitants of the Saharan interior of North Africa. There are about 557,000 Tuareg in Lybia. Tuareg people have to face cultural and linguistic assimilation, and political and economival marginalization. Which led them to armed struggle during the 1990’s. Lot of them left their traditional nomadic lifestyle to settle in the big cities on the edge of the Sahara desert.

© Eric Lafforgue


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Taken on October 29, 2007