Guinea-Bissau has the closest shore in Africa for those sailing from Latin America. That should be a good thing, but it isn’t. What happens when a country's greatest asset is the fact it doesn’t guard its borders? And what follows when a newly elected president chooses to chase those who tried to fight drug lords?
In the last decades, Latin American drug traffickers allied themselves with some top politicians and military of one of the world’s poorest countries. Together they opened a wide transatlantic corridor for cocaine through an archipelago of more than 80 islands of lush vegetation without any surveillance from the state, leading to a new intercontinental route to Europe and elsewhere.
Crossing Guinea-Bissau into Casamance, a rebel-driven territory in southern Senegal, and going from there to Mali, allegedly with the help of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, this passage may have become stronger than ever.
This project is a collaborative investigation into the cocaine network established in Bissau. It's led by Portuguese newspaper Expresso, in partnership with the production company Garden Films, the newspaper Dépêches du Mali, and the Mexican newsmagazine Revista Proceso. It will take us into the field, all through the way, from the paradise islands of Bijagós to the frontier with Senegal and to Mali, to understand how drug trafficking settled along that passage.