PRESS RELEASE 152
Spain takes part in High-Level Meeting on security in the Sahel
08/10/2020

The State Secretary for International Cooperation, Ángeles Moreno Bau, has taken part today in representation of the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Arancha González Laya — who is on an official trip to Niger and Chad — in a High-Level Meeting on the economic challenges of the security crisis in the Sahel.

The event, organised by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (WB) gathered together representatives of international institutions, regional Heads of State, finance ministers, experts in security in the region and key development partners by video-conference.

Minister González Laya holds the presidency of the General Assembly of the Sahel Alliance this year – an international cooperation platform launched in Paris on 13 July 2017, to stabilise and help develop the five Member States of the G5 Sahel: Mauritania, Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso and Chad.

Over recent years, the rise in violence in the region is reversing development progress, both at a humanitarian, social and economic level and at a political level by undermining State authority in conflict zones, hence the firm support of the international community for the governments in the Sahel – a key geo-strategic zone in the fight against people trafficking and terrorist control. 

The discussions during this meeting focused on the need to increase spending on security, ways of safeguarding the macro-economic stability of the region and strengthening cooperation on fiscal and institutional matters with the participation of international financial institutions.

In her speech, the State Secretary for International Cooperation underlined that the Sahel is a priority of Spain’s foreign policy, a region where Spain has extensive experience in technical cooperation and with development programmes of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (Spanish acronym: AECID).

As regards security matters, Ángeles Moreno Bau stressed the importance of the European programme GAR-SI – a corps of security officers from different countries capable of deploying throughout the region - which is implemented by the International and Ibero-American Foundation for Administration and Public Policies (FIIAPP), a Spanish Cooperation institution.

The State secretary also underlined the comprehensive approach that ties in security, development and a humanitarian response, and conveyed the wish of the Government of Spain to extend the moratorium on the payment of debt by countries in the region until 2021 so that they can cope with the expenses associated with the security and COVID-19 crises.

 

 

-NON OFFICIAL TRANSLATION-

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