Today High Representative/Vice‑President Federica Mogherini concluded her tour of the Sahel region in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger.
The 5th EU-Sahel G5 ministerial meeting was held in Ouagadougou with the Sahel G5 Ministers for Foreign Affairs. The meeting was devoted to the security situation and making the Sahel G5 Joint Force operational, to the challenge of restoring the State for security, justice and public services in fragile areas, and to the reconciliation and dialogue mechanisms necessary to strengthen social cohesion and prevent tensions between communities.
During her visit, the High Representative was received by the President of Burkina Faso, Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, and subsequently by the Prime Minister, Christophe Dabiré, and members of his government to discuss the bilateral partnership between the EU and Burkina Faso. Discussions concentrated on the government’s integrated strategy for security and development, the extended Emergency Programme for the Sahel (PUS), for which additional support of EUR 55 million was confirmed.
Federica Mogherini joined the Burkinabe Minister for Education on a visit to a Franco‑Arab school which receives EU funding under the programme for using education and dialogue to protect young people in areas at risk in Burkina Faso, which aims to strengthen the supply of education in vulnerable areas, and to enhance the employability of young people.
In Mali, the High Representative spoke to the President of the Republic, Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta, the Prime Minister, Boubou Cissé, and the Foreign Minister, Tiebilé Dramé. Various ministers and politicians took part in the discussions.
With regard to the security challenges, Federica Mogherini reaffirmed the European Union's strong support for Mali and expressed the wish for the Algiers Peace Agreement to be implemented at a faster pace. She welcomed the prospect of the inclusive national political dialogue.
The High Representative visited Mopti, where she met with representatives of civil society and the main communities of the centre of the country. In the light of their testimonies, she reaffirmed the importance of dialogue, justice and the fight against impunity and stressed the urgent need to restore the State and basic public services in those areas.
The tour ended today in Niger.
Federica Mogherini was received by the President of the Republic, Mohamadou Issoufou. After addressing the security situation, she congratulated the President of the Republic on the start of his term as Chairman of ECOWAS, the Economic Community of West African States, on the accession of Niger to the United Nations Security Council and on the success of the African Union Summit 2019, in particular the 12th Extraordinary Session of the Assembly, at which the African Continental Free Trade Area entered into force.
Federica Mogherini met the Foreign Minister, Kalla Ankourao, and participated in an interministerial meeting to take stock of the challenges facing Niger and of the European Union’s responses, in particular in the areas of development, security and the management of migration flows.
The High Representative also met the General Staff of the Centre Zone command post of the Sahel G5 Joint Force for the delivery of EU‑funded equipment. Finally, Federica Mogherini visited the International Organization for Migration’s transit centre for women and children.
At the end of the day she left Niamey for Bangui in the Central African Republic.