EU-Africa Ministerial Troika meeting in Brazzaville concludes
The EU-Africa ministerial meeting in the framework of the EU-Africa dialogue was held in Brazzaville on 10 October.The meeting of ministers was co-chaired by H.E. Erkki Tuomioja, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland and current President of the Council of the European Union, and H.E. Rodolphe Adada, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Congo and current chairperson of the African Union (AU) Executive Council.
The EU Troika was also composed of Mrs Dorothee Janetzke-Wenzel, Director for African Affairs, Federal Foreign Office of Germany, Mr Stefano Manservisi Director General of the European Commission for Development and Relations with ACP Countries, and Mr Koen Vervaeke, Head of the Africa Unit, General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union. In addition, the Minister of State and Foreign Affairs of Portugal, H.E. Luís Amado, was invited to participate. The African troika was also composed of H.E. Dr. Lam Akol, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Sudan, Ambassador G.O. Ajonye of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and H.E. Dr. Maxwell M. Mkwezalamba, Commissioner for Economic Affairs of the African Union Commission.
Discussions focused on the preparation of the joint EU-Africa strategy and in this context the ministers agreed to expedite work towards the holding of the second Europe-Africa Summit in Lisbon in 2007. The ministers also took note of the Governance Initiative proposed by the European Commission and looked forward to the integration of governance issues in the Joint AU-EU Strategy
The ministers had an extensive discussion of conflict situations, in particular in the Sudan and Somalia. On the Sudan, the ministers expressed deep concern about the security and humanitarian situation in Darfur and demanded that all parties cease all acts of violence and atrocities on the ground. The ministers welcomed the AU's desicion to extend the mandate of the African Union Mission in the Sudan (AMIS) until 31 December 2006 and the initial steps taken towards the implementation of the DPA, and appealed to the international community to support AMIS to enable it to effectively discharge its mandate. On Somalia, the ministers reiterated the need for continued and sustained efforts to stabilise the security situation and consolidate the peace and reconciliation process in that country.
The ministers agreed to hold the EU-Africa conference on Migration and Development in Tripoli, Libya, on 22-23 November 2006 and underlined the necessity of thorough preparation of this event.