I mentioned a month ago that there was more political unrest in Madagascar. In the last few days, the situation has deteriorated further. On Thursday, rival security forces exchanged fire in the capital, Antananarivo. The "government"1 accused the president whom they ousted in a coup last year of being responsible. But Marc Ravalomanana denies any involvement. Today, police arrested the alleged mutineer, i.e., the leader of the non-"government" side in the clash between security forces.
Fortunately, my student left Madagascar this weekend. I haven't seen her yet, but I expect her to be in the lab tomorrow. Even more fortunate than that, this was her last trip to Madagascar for her dissertation research. She has all of the materials she needs for genetic analysis and all of the data necessary for her demographic modeling. We no longer have to worry about political instability and violence in Madagascar threatening her dissertation. That's a great relief.
1I'm using quotes because the "government" is not recognized as legitimate by most international organizations, including the African Union and the United Nations.