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"It is our interest, as Europeans, to see a strong Africa, because your strength is our strength. We need a secure Africa, because your security is our security. We need Africa to seize its full potential," the HRVP said at the Summit.
Presidents of West and Central African countries, including Niger, Chad, Cameroon, Benin, Togo, Senegal and Gabon attended the Summit. Also present were the UK Foreign Secretary, Philip Hammond, the US Deputy Secretary of state, Antony Blinken, and representatives of regional bodies and international organisations.
Ms. Mogherini held bilateral meetings in the margins of the Summit, with President Muhammadu Buhari, President Idris Derby of Chad and President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger. She also met with the leaders of the Bring Back Our Girls, the campaign to free the abducted Chibok Schoolgirls, and representatives of the international human rights groups, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
Ms Federica Mogherini while giving a speech at the event reiterated the European Union belief in Africa and recognises the region as a continent of immense potential, but stressed that security threats and terrorism are clearly holding back development.
She further emphasized that it's only together that we can build a network of bilateral, sub-regional and regional organisations and move towards a more just and cooperative world order, where all continents and all regions have their place and their role on the global stage. A world order where Africa holds the place it deserves, and the place that the world needs Africa to take because together with the position also goes the responsibility.
Ms. Mogherini affirmed that this is a collective battle which needs to be fought together as partners and friends.
She also announced €50 million in aid from the EU in support if the Multi National Joint Task Force of the Lake Chad Basin Commission in order to secure and protect the civilian population in the fight against Boko Haram.
See link to the HRVP's speech here: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=-bJDTwZD2EI