The heads of government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) have directed ECOWAS Commission to support the operational and logistic capacities of countries in the subregion that are currently fighting terrorism.
This formed part of resolutions reached on Sunday by the Authority of Heads of State and Government of the ECOWAS, during its 60th Ordinary Session, held at the Old Banquet Hall of the State House, Abuja.
The resolutions, contained in a communique authorized by thirteen heads of state and government or their representatives, also stressed the need for a proper coordination of efforts by members states in the fight against the terrorism scourge.
While expressing worry over the escalation of the security crisis, especially its recent incursions into the coastal states areas of the subregion, the Authority reaffirmed its resolve to relentlessly fight the scourge.
According to the communique:
“On security in the region, the Authority remains concerned with the deterioration of the security situation in the Sahel, characterized by recurrence of terrorist attacks in Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Nigeria and the expansion of the attacks in the coastal countries. The Authority strongly condemns these attacks and expresses solidarity with the affected member states and populations.
“The Authority reaffirms its determination to relentlessly combat the scourge of terrorism. To that effect, the Authority welcomes the recent conduct by some members states of joint operations along the borders of frontline countries and directed the Commission to provide support for the planning and conduct of such operations within the framework of the implementation of the 2020-2024 plan of action to eradicate terrorism in the region.
“The Authority further reiterates its call on member states to fulfil their pledges on the voluntary contributions into the dedicated fund to support the implementation of the 2020-2024 Action Plan.
“The Authority directs the Ecowas Commission to strengthen the operational and logistical capacity of the forces in the frontline countries and stresses the need to strengthen the coordination of member states’ efforts in the fight against terrorism”, the communique read.
The Session also arrived at resolutions on other issues, including the adoption of the ECOWAS Vision 2050; Economic performance of member countries; peace, security and democracy, which featured the develoments in Guinea, Mali and two recently held elections in Cape Verde and The Gambia.
Other resolutions are the creation of a monetary union; ECOWAS Customs Union and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA); and on the implementation of other regional integration programmes.