EU-UN Spotlight Initiative: at the forefront of ending violence against women and girls

Today in the margins of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the European Union and the United Nations are hosting a high level event on the EU-UN Spotlight Initiative – inviting all countries, leaders, civil society representatives and loc…

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Stronger South-South Cooperation Key to Tackling Climate Change, Rising Inequality, Global Leaders Stress as High-Level Conference Begins in Buenos Aires

BUENOS AIRES, 20 March — Amid complex and rapidly evolving global challenges, the tried-and-tested platform of South-South cooperation — a system of exchanging knowledge and resources between developing countries — must play a promine…

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General documents – 36th ACP-EU JPA, 3-5 December 2018, Cotonou (Benin) – Delegation to the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly

The 36th session of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA), held in Cotonou (Benin) on 3-5 December 2018, was opened by:Joseph Owona Kono, Co-President of the Joint Parliamentary AssemblyMichèle Rivasi, Acting Co-President of the Joint Pa…

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EU releases €138 million in humanitarian and development funding for Africa's Lake Chad region

The humanitarian crisis in the Africa’s Lake Chad basin, affecting parts of Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon, continues to worsen due to prolonged violence, insecurity and environmental degradation. To help the most vulnerable communities, the Commiss…

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Background – 32nd ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly session

The keynote debate at the 32nd plenary session of the ACP-EU JPA, entitled ” Demographic growth: challenges and opportunities” will focus on issues related to uncontrolled population growth, on the consequences of strong demographic pressure in various regions of the world but also the impact of population aging in Europe. These elements will fuel intensive discussion throughout the session.

The Assembly will vote on Wednesday 21 December on 3 resolutions:

  • Constitutional limits on presidential terms (debate on Tuesday morning, co-rapporteurs: Tulia Ackson (Tanzania) and Ignazio Corrao (IT)),

Two urgent topics will be debated and concluded by resolutions:

On Tuesday, 20 December, MEPs and their counterparts from national parliaments of the ACP countries will also discuss the role of trade in attaining the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A keynote speech will be given by UNCTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi.

Another current topic, “How to support the resettlement of migrants in their home country” will be among those debated on Wednesday, 21 December.

The formal opening session of the 32nd session of the JPA on Monday, 19 December at 11.00, will take place in the presence of Justin Muturi, Speaker of the National Assembly of Kenya. MEPs will also hold debates with Commissioner Neven Mimica (HR) on Monday, 19 December, and with representatives of ACP and EU Councils on Wednesday, 21 December.

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Joint Communication by HRVP Federica Mogherini, EU Commissioner Neven Mimica and AU Commissioner for Peace and Security, Smail

We have signed today an agreement on €50 million support from the EU’s “African Peace Facility” to the Lake Chad Basin Commission Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF) in its fight against Boko Haram, as mandated by the African Union Peace and Security Council. This agreement comes at a time of renewed efforts by the member countries of the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) and Benin to eliminate the threat posed by the Boko Haram terrorist group and create conditions for the rehabilitation of the affected areas and people.

We commend the countries of the region for the progress made over the past months in ensuring a coordinated regional response through the MNJTF . The agreement we have signed today will further strengthen the regional coordination of the response.

Our support will allow for the construction and maintenance of MNJTF headquarters in Ndjamena as well as of sector Headquarters in Cameroon and Niger. We will also provide transport and communication assets to the force headquarters, allowing for effective coordination and command of military operations. These assets, including vehicles, aerial transportation and reconnaissance capacities and a command, control, communication and information system, will put the central command in a position to co-ordinate operations among troop contributing countries in their respective territories. The scope is to prevent Boko Haram’s ability to move across borders when fighting uncoordinated bilateral operations.

We reiterate our strong mutual engagement to contribute to restore a safe and secure environment to the civilian population in the areas affected by Boko Haram and other terrorist groups. Boko Haram attacks against the population have severely affected the North-east of Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon and Niger. More than 13,000 have been killed, 2.5 million people have been internally displaced, and an estimated 250 000 people fled to neighboring countries. The escalation of violence has disrupted regional agricultural production and unsettled local markets, causing increasing malnutrition.

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EU reinforces its support to Central Africa

Today, Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica, signed the Central Africa Regional Indicative Programme (RIP) of the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) for an amount of €350 million for the period 2014-2020. 

The signature took place in the presence of Ministers and representatives of the Central African region, the Secretary General of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), and the President of the Commission for Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa (CEMAC).

The programme, whose implementation will be monitored by a steering committee, will cover three areas: political integration and cooperation in peace and security (€43 million), regional economic integration and trade (€211 million, of which €135 million will go through the Infrastructure Trust Fund), and the sustainable development of natural resources and biodiversity (€88 million). Another €8 million is set aside to support technical cooperation and regional authorising officers.  

Commissioner Neven Mimica said: “Regional integration is only viable when driven from within the region. It is a means to fulfill the policy objectives set out in the Cotonou Agreement, and to build on the achievements which ECCAS and CEMAC have already made, in economic and monetary integration, in peace and security, in infrastructure and in environment and natural resources.”

 

Context

The region of Central Africa includes 11 countries: Angola, Burundi, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Sao Tomé and Principe. It has to be noted, however, that Equatorial Guinea never signed the revised Cotonou Agreement, and can therefore not directly benefit from EDF funding. The region has a total population of about 160 million with the Democratic Republic of Congo accounting for nearly half. It is a region rich in natural resources, covering the largest tropical forest area after the Amazon.

Previous funding for Central Africa under the 10th European Development Fund amounted to €165 million. 

For more information see also:

Press release: The EU boosts its support to recovery and development in the Central African Republic

http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-15-5040_en.htm

Factsheet: The EU engagement with the Central African Republic (CAR)

http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_MEMO-15-5041_en.htm

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EU boosts assistance for the Sahel to increase resilience

The European Commission is providing assistance worth €34 million for immediate food aid for the most vulnerable people in Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Mali, Niger and Chad. Coming at the start of the lean season in the Sahel region, this funding will help bridge the gap until the next harvest.

Millions of people in the Sahel are exposed to the risk of hunger and it is crucial that we keep helping to meet their immediate needs. This emergency aid continues in parallel with the European Union’s work with the Sahel countries and partners on strengthening the resilience of the most vulnerable people to future crises,” said Christos Stylianides, Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management.

The assistance will be delivered through cash, vouchers or food, depending on the local market situation.

This new funding comes from the 11th European Development Fund reserve and brings the Commission’s total humanitarian aid for the Sahel region to €185 million in 2015.

Neven Mimica, EU Commissioner for International cooperation and Development added: “Building resilience is a major priority in EU development cooperation. We stand side by side with our Sahel partners to improve food and nutrition security and enhance resilience through our support to agriculture, health, water and education“.

Background

The Sahel crisis remains extremely complex. One in seven people in the region – more than 20 million in total – do not have enough affordable and nutritious food for healthy life. As many as 5.8 million children suffer from acute malnutrition and 4.3 million people need emergency relief.

The conflict in northern Nigeria and Mali further aggravates the situation that drove hundreds of thousands of refugees looking for shelter in Mauritania, Niger, Burkina Faso, Chad and Cameroon, where host communities themselves often struggle to survive.

Another problem is drought in the second half of last year which has jeopardised harvests and is making it even harder for the poorest to buy food.

The growing humanitarian needs require both massive relief aid and measures to address the root causes of food insecurity and malnutrition and increase the resilience of the poorest people. The European Commission has been instrumental in the creation of AGIR, a global alliance to strengthen resilience in West Africa which has set itself a ‘Zero hunger’ goal by 2032.

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