The West African nation of Mali has seen instability and violence since March of 2012 when a military coup overthrew the government of President Amadou Toumani Touré. Since then, the violence has escalated as Islamic extremists have joined the fighting and further divided the country into North and South.
This month France announced their intervention due to the rapid escalation of violence over the last few months, and the United States is now helping with operational support.
Nolwenn Leroy is a French singer who has just released her sixth album, simply named 'Nolwenn.' She was eleven when she began taking violin lessons, and continued her music education as a teenager in Ohio, where she spent a year as an exchange student.