Italy to promote Africa at G7 Taormina

 

“Africa is very important for us. Indeed, it is perhaps the focus of our G7 presidency,” said Raffaele Trombetta, the senior Italian diplomat who has led behind-the-scenes negotiations on the G7 agenda with colleagues from the United States, Japan, Germany, Britain, France and Canada.

The Italian presidency of the G7 raised is concerned about the migrant crisis, caused by multiple conflicts in Africa, becoming increasingly alarming in view of the latest terroristic attack by a UK citizen from Libyan descent in Manchester.

At the moment, according to Bild newspaper, seven million Africans at Libyan coast are searching for a possibility to cross Mediterranean to reach Europe.

“We don’t just want to talk about crises, like migration and famine, but also to promote innovation in Africa and see what we can do to help,” – Trombetta continued. The Italian presidency invited leaders of Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Niger, Tunisia to participate in the session on  Innovation and Development in Africa, 27 of May, 2017, along with the African Union (AU), African Development Bank (AfDB).

The involvement of the emerging economies, of developing countries and of international organizations reflects a gradual evolution in the issues addressed by the G7. Initial interest in issues relating solely to financial stability and to macro-economic coordination were soon joined by an interest in other crucial themes ranging from development in Africa and climate change to food safety and the resolution of international crises.

It was Italy, in Genoa in 2001, that inaugurated the traditional by now “African segment” of the Summit, with dialogue sessions between the G7 leaders and the African countries invited by the Presidency.

 

 

 

 

Brak al-Shati: EU calls Libyans for reconciliation

Brak al-Shati
“Violence is not a solution to Libya’s challenges. It can only  put at risk the ongoing work to find a peaceful and negotiated solution to the political and security crisis.”
“All parties need to exercise restraint, cease all hostilities and avoid further escalation of violence for sake of all Libyans.”
The reports of violence at the Brak al-Shati air base in southern Libya and the high numbers of fatalities, including civilians and alleged summary executions, constitute a worrying development.”
“Further dialogue is essential between all parties in a spirit of reconciliation”.
The reports of violence at the Brak al-Shati air base in southern Libya and the high numbers of fatalities, including civilians and alleged summary executions, constitute a worrying development.

Faki Mahamat au Parlement européen

La migration, le développement durable, la diplomatie économique ainsi que la jeunesse et les questions de coopération en matière de paix et de sécurité sur le continent devraient être parmi les points soulevés par l’ancien ministre des Affaires étrangères du Tchad, M. Faki Mahamat (illustration).

Plus tôt ce mois-ci, l’UE a proposé un partenariat renforcé avec l’Afrique en matière de paix et de sécurité ainsi que de création d’emplois pour les jeunes sur les deux continents. Le cinquième sommet UE-Afrique aura lieu à Abidjan, en Côte d’Ivoire, en novembre 2017, avec la jeunesse pour thème clé. Le sommet sera une opportunité unique pour les dirigeants africains et européens de remodeler et d’approfondir leurs relations.

Troika “deeply troubled” by conflict in South Sudan

“The members of the Troika (the UK, US and Norway) and the EU are deeply troubled by the ongoing conflict in South Sudan. We echo the concerns highlighted recently by the Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat and Chairman of the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission President Festus Mogae on increased violence, and strongly endorse their call to end all military operations immediately” – says the statement by the Troika and EU on the security situation in South Sudan.

“Opposition attacks on civilians are disrupting lifesaving aid and commercial trade. Large government offensives in Yuai, Waat, Tonga and Kodok have resulted in even more tragic humanitarian consequences, displacing 50,000-100,000 individuals in recent weeks. Government forces continue to target civilians in violation of the law of armed conflict. These actions stand in direct conflict with the Government’s stated aim of a political solution to the conflict, and severely undermine the prospect of any credible national dialogue. The Troika and EU call on President Kiir to implement immediately his commitment to a unilateral ceasefire as conveyed to IGAD heads of state on 25 March.”

“We continue to underline that there is no military solution to the conflict. The Government of South Sudan must ensure that there is a meaningful ceasefire which shows a genuine commitment to peace and stability, and is not simply a reflection of the fact that fighting is made more difficult by the rainy season. Such a commitment must go beyond simply a cessation of hostilities, and include withdrawing troops; disbanding ethnic militias; helping, not hindering humanitarian assistance; and releasing political detainees.”

EU saving lives in Horn of Africa

A Humanitarian Crisis Meeting on the alarming levels offood insecurity in the Horn of Africa was held in Brussels on 5 April 2017.

The meeting was co-hosted by Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs (EU HR), Mr Sigmar Gabriel, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Germany, and Mr Stephen O’Brien, United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator.

The objective of the meeting was to raise awareness and share analysis on the dire humanitarian situation in the Horn of Africa. Urgent and coordinated action is needed by the international community to rapidly and effectively scale-up life-saving humanitarian aid. While the United Nations and humanitarian partners have already intensified their life-saving response, more funding and access is needed.

 

With several million people starving and at risk of famine, the Horn of Africa is in dire need of life-saving humanitarian assistance to prevent recurrence of the famine of 2011 in Somalia. Several countries in the area are affected by conflict and displacement, a situation further exacerbated by consecutive severe droughts. The situation is especially dire in Somalia. Millions are also struggling in Ethiopia and Kenya, despite broad and strong support by the Governments. This poses a serious threat to the stability of the region as well as to the security and development gains achieved over the past years.

Humanitarian organisations warn that millions of people could starve if life-saving assistance cannot be providedrapidly. United Nations has described the currentsituation as dramatic and called for urgent action, including funding and humanitarian access.

Humanitarian partners require more than US$5.6 billion in 2017 for Somalia, South Sudan, North-Eastern Nigeria and Yemen. Of this, more than US$4.4 billion is required for immediate assistance to avert an even greater catastrophe.

The EU High Representative (HR), Germany and United Nations reaffirmed their commitment to support the efforts to assist people in need and recognized the extraordinary work done by humanitarian workers often in very difficult circumstances. The EU HR, Germany and United Nations commended the considerable success some governments in the region have achieved in strengthening drought resilience and recognized the efforts of Governments and humanitarian partners in responding to the crisis.

Humanitarian assistance, however, cannot address the structural deficits and root causes underlying the protracted conflicts and food insecurity. Political solutions as well as a parallel scale-up in longer-term action are needed to prevent a recurrence of the situation.

The EU HR, Germany and United Nations called on all partners to increase support for humanitarian assistance in the Horn of Africa and other crisis areas. The HR/VP, Germany and United Nations stressed that common efforts can only be effective as long as access for the timely delivery of humanitarian aid is granted.

The meeting also served to provide input to the London conference on Somalia on 11 May 2017 and the international meeting “The Berlin Humanitarian Call – jointly against famine” taking place on 12 April 2017 in Berlin.

The meeting was held in the presence of ministerial level representatives from national governments and international organisations, notably several EU Members States, Mr Christos Stylianides, European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid & Crisis Management, Norway, Switzerland, ICRC, FAO, WFP and Norwegian Refugee Council.