The Department of Political Affairs Peace and Security (PAPS) of the Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), held a strategic meeting with some Political Officers and Military Advisors of the Diplomatic Corps accredited to Nigeria and ECOWAS to deliberate on the peace and security way forward in the region.
In his address during the virtual meeting, the ECOWAS Commission’s Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, General Francis Behanzin, affirmed the determination of ECOWAS to continuously improve the political and security landscape of the region.
A statement issued by the Communications Division of the Commission said that with particular reference to states undergoing political and constitutional reforms, Behanzin stated that ECOWAS is actively involved in supporting political stability and the consolidation of the democratic processes. He added that the implementation of political actions required the cooperation of all stakeholders and partners.
Admitting that regional stability has been threatened by persistent attacks by terrorist movements and other armed groups, particularly in Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and North-East Nigeria and in the Lake Chad Basin region, while the new incursions into Northern Côte d’Ivoire has further exacerbated the challenges, Commissioner Behanzin enthused that the exchanges of the meeting and at subsequent fora will “generate proposals and solutions capable of providing appropriate responses to these new threats”.
The Co-chair of the Development Partners Thematic Group on Peace and Security and representative of the European Union Delegation (EU) Delegation, Madam Tassin-Pelzer Cecile, commended ECOWAS for its role in the efforts to bring about a more peaceful and stable region. While giving assurances of sustained collaboration, she recalled the portfolio of the EU Support to the ECOWAS Peace and Security Architecture and Operations (EPSAO), the EU’s Peace, Security and Stability Programme (PSS), among others and assured of the EU Delegation’s commitment to the ECOWAS’ vision of peace, stability and prosperity.
The Commission’s Directors of Political Affairs Dr. Aderemi Ajibewa and his Peacekeeping & Regional Security counterpart Dr. Cyriaque Agnekethom debriefed on the political and security situation in the region, the strides made so far to create political stability, containment of existing and emerging threats to peace, the challenges encountered as well as the overall road map being charted using the various instruments at the disposal of the regional community.