Spain commits to peace and security in West Africa
On 5 November, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, in collaboration with Casa Árabe [Arab House] and the Ghanaian think-tank KAIPTC, will present the seminar entitled “Security in West Africa: lessons learned from insecurity in the Sahel”. The event will gather together African and Spanish experts to jointly address the main security challenges facing the region of West Africa

The seminar will be inaugurated by the minister, together with the Commander of KAIPTC (Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping and Training Centre) and the Director of Casa África [Africa House]. The participants will include the State Secretary for Foreign Affairs and for Ibero-America and the Caribbean, Cristina Gallach, the Head of Security of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Colonel Dieng, the Ambassador of Senegal to Spain, Mariame Sy, and some 20 Spanish and African researchers and experts.

Spain, within the framework of the 3rd Africa Plan, has expressed its clear commitment to the Sahel and to West Africa as a whole in political, development and security terms. The Minister for Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, in her capacity as President of the General Assembly of the Sahel Alliance, has just visited four countries in the region. Furthermore, Spain is the leading contributor in number of servicemen to the EUTM Mali training mission and the Guardia Civil heads up the project to train gendarmes in the GAR-SI Sahel countries.

The contribution to stability in the Sahel has been one of the leading issues on the international and European agenda in recent years. The fight against violent extremism and the extension of trans-national criminal networks has placed a region with a tremendous potential for development in the spotlight and is keeping neighbouring countries on high alert regarding the knock-on effect that these threats may have within their own borders.

The experts, who will meet on a semi-in situ format at the event’s three headquarters - Casa Árabe in Madrid, Casa África in Las Palmas and KAIPTC, in Accra – will exchange opinions on the security situation in West Africa. The ultimate aim of the event is to propitiate and step up exchanges between Spanish and African researchers and experts specialised in these matters and further analyse what is being done at an international level on the causes, effects and responses to insecurity in the region.

The seminar will be held between 9 am and 5 pm with three round tables that will address the nature and dynamics of violent extremism, the fight against radicalisation through military cooperation and security, and the role of women as catalysers of peace in the region. It can be followed live in English, French and Spanish through the YouTube channel of Casa África.



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