May 30, 2023

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German government’s new “Sahel Plus” initiative – DW – 03/05/2023

The approval was given by a cabinet meeting in Berlin on Wednesday morning End of 2022 already announced result, due to tensions with the ruling junta in Bamako. But the German government does not want to withdraw from the region: especially the Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development is working An initiative called “Sahel-Plus”. Who puts Emphasis should be placed on creating employment opportunities for the youth.

With this new initiative, Economic Cooperation Minister Svenja Schulze wants to provide alternatives to young people in the region so that they are not tempted to join jihadist groups.

“Why do so many young people join terrorist organizations? One reason is the rewards. Creating alternatives, helping people grow food to feed them, is just one contribution but a very important contribution to sustaining the region.” and offset the growing influence of Russia and China.

A multi-national project

Based on the observation that jihadist groups ignore borders, the Sahel Plus initiative intends to address the countries of the Sahel – Mali. NigerBurkina Faso, Mauritania and Chad – but also Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Togo and Benin.

Apart from the agriculture sector, the initiative also wants to create jobs and training in construction or infrastructure construction.

No extra money

Initially, the Minister of Social Democracy did not want to increase the envelope allocated for development assistance to these countries. Rather, it is a question of redirecting funding to countries that respect democratic standards.

“We have changed aid in the region”The Minister told our colleagues at RBB. Currently, Mali has an unelected interim government; Who is certainly gearing up for elections, but who has come to power. So now we cannot actively cooperate with this government. Stepping up our aid to Niger And we’re cutting our aid to Mali. Because we still want to support the people and contribute to establishing security, but without supporting an unelected government. Accurate Svenja Schulz.

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Next summer, Svenja Schulze wants to run for presidentAlliance Sahel An organization that brings together eighteen major donor countries and organizations.

As a reminder, theGermany He has been participating in Minusma since 2013. With about a thousand soldiers, the U.N. It is the largest Western contributor to the work. Mali. The Bundeswehr will gradually withdraw from the country over the next twelve months.