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Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Security & development: A coherent strategy from the EU for Sahel

The Sahel region is the southern geopolitical border of Europe. The instability in this region will eventually spread to neighbouring countries of Europe and within its territory. This paper discusses the main problems of the region and offers a critical assessment of the "strategy of the European Union for Security and Development in the Sahel" adopted in 2011. This strategy points to the lack of competence of the authorities and structural poverty, which it considers are the main problems of the region and rightfully recommends acting in a concerted manner in the areas of security and development.
We quite agree with the analysis of the situation and with the suggested policy areas.  However we argue that the strategy of the European Union in the Sahel, two years after its adoption, has not met expectations. Despite statements supporting the need for a comprehensive approach, the initiatives of the European Union in the areas of security and development are totally unrelated. But ultimately, it is the national oppositions that represent the greatest obstacle to a policy deployment strategy for the Sahel. Among these obstacles, there is the non recognition of the strategic importance of the region, the lack of willingness to cooperate with Algeria and the refusal to integrate military assistance in the instruments of the European Union.