ROME, JANUARY 16 – Ahead of next month UN Security Council trip to the Sahel region, Italy pledged 2.5 million Euros of additional funds for capacity building and strengthening of Sub-Saharan institutions. The funds will support some of the most fragile countries in the world, in a region of crucial importance as it’s the crossroads of illegal migration which reaches Libya through the Sahara desert, and then, crossing the Mediterranean, arrives in Italy.
Among the beneficiaries of the new fundings the blue helmets of UN mission MINUSMA in Mali (half a million Euros) and the eight countries trade bloc IGAD (Intergovernative Authority for the Developlment) in the Horn of Africa’s for its newly established Center for the Prevention and Contrast of Violent Extremism.
The G-5 Sahel, a regional group for stability and development which includes Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Ciad, will receive 410,000 Euros to develop a protected communication system between each country and the Permanent Secretariat in Mauritania. Training courses on anti-terrorism and the protection of cultural heritage will be organized in Velletri, south of Rome, by the Arma dei Carabinieri: 120 policemen from Nigeria, Guinea, Mali, Niger, Uganda e Mauritania will attend.
Other training programs on law enforcement and customs matters will be held by officers of the Guardia di Finanza, an Italian law enforcement agency under the authority of the Minister of Economy and Finance and essentially responsible for dealing with financial crime and smuggling: personnel from Burkina Faso, Ciad, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Nigeria,Niger, Cote d’Ivoire and Seychelles will attend the courses.
The Italian government will also fund Scuola Sant’Anna in Pisa to train young diplomats from the Central African Republic. The Italian NGO Comunita’ di Sant’Egidio will be sustained in its efforts in favor of inter-religious dialogue in the same country. (@OnuItalia)