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Mali is a landlocked Republic, sharing borders with Mauritania, Algeria, Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Guinea, Niger and Senegal. French Is the official language, but Bambara is spoken by 80% of the population. Numerous other African languages are also spoken. Outside the bigger towns few people speak French, and hardly anyone speaks English

It is a vast land of flat plains fed by two major rivers, the Senegal on its western edge and the great River Niger. On its journey north the Niger converges with the River Bani, and forms a rich inland delta, the marshlands of the Macina, stretching for some 450km (280 miles) along the river's length, in some places 200km (124 miles) wide. The central part of the country is arid grazing land, called the Sahel.

Bamako
, is the capital of Mali. It is located on the Niger River, in the southwestern part of the country.
Bamako is the nation's administrative center, as well as a river port and a major regional trade center. Manufactures include textiles, processed meat, and metal goods. There is commercial fishing on the Niger River. The area of the city has been continuously inhabited since the Palaeolithic, but the legendary founding of Bamako occurred in the seventeenth century by Seribadian Niaré and Soumba Coulibaly, or Bamba Sanago, before its chiefdom passed to Diaoussadian Niaré.