European Union set to launch civilian-military mission In West Africa

The European Union is preparing to initiate an advisory and capacity-building mission in West Africa during the fall. This mission is to target the reduction of Islamist militancy along the Gulf of Guinea coast, as reported by the media on Sunday.

EU foreign ministers will declare the commencement of the “civil-military” mission during a meeting scheduled for October in Luxembourg. The operational scope will encompass Ghana, Togo, Benin, and Cote d’Ivoire. Benin and Ghana governments have already sent formal invitations.

High-ranking senior EU diplomats have stated that the mission arises from “the EU’s concern that jihadist groups might expand their operations from the Sahel region to the southern coastal nations along the Gulf of Guinea in Western Africa”.

The mission will involve a combination of police and military personnel, with the exact count yet to be finalized. Additional objectives encompass providing anti-terrorist operational readiness training, offering technical support, and fostering confidence-building within the local security sectors.

In recent years, extremist groups affiliated with ISIS and Al-Qaeda have spurred militant activities, affecting nations like Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso.

The circumstances in this region, especially in Niger, hold significance for the EU due to its role as a crucial transit nation for African migrants en route to Europe.

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