Fight against terrorism in Sahel not over – President Ouattara

Alassane Ouattara - President of Ivory Coast
Alassane Ouattara – President of Ivory Coast

Mr Alassane Ouatarra, Ivorian President and Chairman of Economic Community of the West African States (ECOWAS), on Friday called on countries in the sub-region not to relent in the fight against terrorism.

He said the fight against terrorism in the Sahel region is not over.

Speaking at the opening of an extraordinary meeting of the ECOWAS in Dakar, Senegal, President Ouattara called on West African nations to “remain at the side of the Malian people”.

He appealed to the United Nations to support the ECOWAS in the fight against terrorism and insecurity in the Sahel.

The summit is being attended by Vice President Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, with the focus of the leaders of the 15-nation West African bloc on moving the region towards a common market and a single currency by 2020.

President Ouattara and ECOWAS Commission President Kadre Ouedraogo used the opening ceremony to draw attention to threats pose by terrorists on the region.

President Ouattara commended Mali on the successful conduct of elections and the reconciliation process.

He said the process would guarantee peace, security and prosperity for the nation and assured the people of the support of ECOWAS in the stabilisation and reconstruction process.

He called for the mobilisation of all the necessary support and solidarity from the international community to make the next November elections in Guinea Bissau peaceful and transparent.

Mr Ouedrago condemned the Westgate terrorist attack in Kenya that claimed the life of the late Ghanaian poet Kofi Awoonor, with condolences to President John Dramani Mahama and the people of Ghana.

“This tragedy reminds us of the permanent threats posed by extremism and terrorism on the safety of our people and the need for constant vigilance against these scourges,” Mr Oudraogo said.

Source: GNA

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