King Mohammed VI reiterated the Kingdom of Morocco’s commitment to give fresh momentum to the Community of Sahel-Saharan States (CEN-SAD), saying that he is in favor of strengthening the group’s action for the promotion of peace, stability and development in the Sahel-Saharan region.
“I reiterate the Kingdom of Morocco’s commitment to give fresh momentum to the CEN-SAD as a Regional Economic Community of the African Union. To this end, I am in favor of strengthening CEN-SAD’s action for the promotion of peace, stability and development in the Sahel-Saharan region,” said the King is a message to the extraordinary session of the conference of heads of state and government of the Community of Sahel-Saharan States, held on Saturday (April 13) in N’Ddjamena.
The Kingdom of Morocco has always sought to ensure the emergence of the Sahel-Saharan region by maintaining fraternal relations with all member countries based on cooperation, solidarity and respect for their sovereignty and territorial integrity, noted the monarch, reaffirming that Morocco’s commitment to South-South cooperation aims to pave the way for an integration that is conducive to investment and trade and that targets co-development.
With that in mind, the King went on, Morocco has worked actively to establish a network of actors involving both the private sector and civil society, adding that this policy has led to the setting up of three Commissions, one for the Sahel Region, one for the Congo Basin Region and the third for Island States, in addition to the adoption of the “triple A Initiative” for the adaptation of African agriculture.
“In keeping with its fundamental principles and deeply held beliefs, the Kingdom of Morocco remains ready to share its experience in combating terrorism and violent extremism with CEN-SAD African Member States. That experience is based on the triad defined by security, religion and the fight against vulnerability and poverty,” the sovereign underlined.
It is only through sincere, responsible cooperation between all the actors involved that such a battle can be won decisively, King Mohammed VI highlighted.
“To achieve that objective, we must provide our Organization with resources that are commensurate with the ambitions and missions we assign to it. It is essential that we all pay our national contributions to the CEN-SAD budget,” the King stressed, emphasizing the importance of good governance.
“The greatest challenge we are facing together remains that of offering our countries and our peoples an area in which security, stability, prosperity and development prevail,” the King underscored.
The monarch noted that “the Community of Sahel-Saharan States is an important source of wealth and has great potential for development. With a GDP in excess of $1 trillion and a population of some 600 million, the Sahel-Saharan region boasts significant natural resources, has a potential for complementarity and for economies of scale and is an important reservoir for growth.”
The King underlined the need to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of CEN-SAD executive bodies, establish the various institutional structures provided for in the revised CEN-SAD Treaty, devise a strategy dedicated to human development in the Sahel-Saharan region as well as programs for the integration of young people, ensure the effective implementation of the strategy to combat terrorism and violent extremism, ensure the operationalization of the CEN-SAD 2015-2050 Security and Development Strategy, develop a common policy on border security and adopt an operational action plan.
The sovereign said that “these measures should enhance our Community’s role as a preferred interlocutor for the resolution of the crises plaguing our region, using a coordinated approach with the other Regional Economic Communities, the African Union, the United Nations, the European Union and other stakeholders.”
“The CEN-SAD’s action with regard to the maintenance of peace and security in the Sahel-Saharan region should be based on the principles of respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of states and non-interference in their internal affairs. Consequently, that action should favor dialogue, mediation, good offices and preventive diplomacy,” King Mohammed VI said.
“Should they be supported by a revamped education system geared towards creativity and human resource development, the above-mentioned measures would enable us to ensure the protection of our current and future generations,” the King insisted.