I got a letter from one of the Mother Teresa Sisters who used to work here in Harare. She is now in the Comoro islands, where the contrast with life here emphasises the diversity of Africa.
The Comoros are a group of four inhabited islands, with a few outlying rocks and reefs, in the Mozambique channel, between the African mainland and Madagascar. They were a French colony and came late to independence because France wanted to keep a military base in that part of the Indian Ocean.
When the islands did get independence, one, Mayotte (Maore in the local language), chose to remain French and is now the 101st /departement/ of France. This is cheaper for the French as they only need to raise this one of the four islands to near the economic level of metropolitan France in order to keep their base on the island.
Mayotte is in the process of changing its laws and governance system from traditional Islamic to secular French. The other three islands remain a poor and isolated Islamic state, so poor that there are no passenger ships between the islands. People wanting to travel from one island to another must fly, which rather restricts the nunbers able to make such a trip. Propagating other religions than Islam is forbidden.
France's relations with its former colonies around the world is an issue that needs expanding in another blog.