Friday, October 28, 2011

Much is happening, and much is about to happen.
I have been too busy to write, but that is not the only reason- I find to my frustration that for once I cannot really talk about what is going on. Too much is at stake. The manuscript project may fail for reasons too complicated and delicate to go into. Bear with me.
Meanwhile there are some hotel guests here, although most people in tourism are suffering badly because of the irresponsible stance of the foreign diplomatic corps and their Mali 'high risk' warnings. I finally got a most unsatisfactory response to my hand delivered letter of complaint to the British Embassy from Nick Griffith, the British ambassador. He just reiterated the same nonsense you find on the foreign office website, and does not reply to my query of how it is possible to put the whole of Mali on red alert when nothing has ever happened in any tourist areas!
More soon...


Blogger Richard Trillo said...

Hang on in there Sophie. Good luck with the manuscripts, I can't offer any comfort on that.

But our meeting with the FCO last Monday (about 20 stakeholders, mostly from the UK travel industry, plus Matt Christie from the Sleeping Camel in Bamako), made our well-worn case yet again, and there are signs that the FCO knows it has backed a poor position - mostly because they only have Nick on the ground in Bamako, and the consensus of opinion, from independent travellers and the Malian Ministry of Tourism itself, is that there is nothing to worry about south of the Niger river, and in Timbuktu itself. And the representative of the counter-terrorism unit was I think genuinely persuaded that the warnings may do more harm to Britain's interests than good, by keeping people out of work and more liable to seek illicit employment.

They've promised to try to organise another meeting, including the British ambassador, before the end of the year.

Perhaps you could come over to add your voice?


5:35 PM  
Blogger toubab said...

I would love to be there- you are talking about London? But it is unlikely- It is the hight of the season, and even in this bed climate we are pretty busy..but let's see! please keep in touch

9:17 PM  

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