Akufo-Addo Says Withdrawal Of Sahelian States From ECOWAS Could Have Dire Impact On Accra Initiative

Akufo-Addo Says Withdrawal Of Sahelian States From ECOWAS Could Have Dire Impact On Accra Initiative

  • President Akufo-Addo has expressed grave concern about the withdrawal of Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger from ECOWAS and its impact on the Accra Initiative
  • He said without the participation of the Sahelian countries, the Accra Initiative would be greatly undermined, and it could lead to the rise of violent extremism in the region
  • He has urged member states to actively engage in dialogue with the Sahelian states to rejoin the fold

President Akufo-Addo has warned that the withdrawal of Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) would have a dire impact on the Accra Initiative.

The Accra Initiative is a regional security arrangement aimed at preventing the spillover of terrorism from the Sahel and addressing transnational organised crime and violent extremism in member countries’ border areas.

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Akufo-Addo Says Withdrawal Of Sahelian States From ECOWAS Could Have Dire Impact On Accra Initiative
According to Akufo-Addo, the withdrawal of the three Sahelian states could see the rise in violent extremism in the area
Source: Getty Images

Speaking at the High-Level African Counter-Terrorism Meeting held in Abuja, Nigeria, President Akufo-Addo said the withdrawal of the three Sahelian states would adversely impact cohesion within the Initiative.

He said if the Sahelian states are not brought back into the fold, it could lead to an escalation of violent extremism in the region, threatening the relative peace coastal states, in particular, have been enjoying.

He said ECOWAS member states must prioritise engaging in dialogue with Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger as a matter of urgency to prevent further degeneration of the matter.

Akufo-Addo also urged member states to remain united to strengthen regional security efforts within the bloc.

According to him, Ghana was unwavering in its commitment to ensuring the success of the Accra Initiative and urged similar dedication and commitment from member states.

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He said the Initiative was envisioned as a self-help move to develop a homegrown solution to tackle the rise of terrorism and organised crime in the sub-region.

The failure of which would lead to the terrorist elements from the north taking over the West African sub-region and destabilising it totally.

Over 200 Togolese flee to Ghana after terrorist attack

Earlier this year, over 200 residents of three border communities fled Togo to Ghana on the evening of March 5, 2024, following a suspected terrorist attack at Nagudi in the neighbouring country.

The Togolese communities were attacked by about 10 armed men on motorbikes.

Joy News reported that about eight people were suspected to have been killed during the attack.

Following the incident, residents of Jangbande, Tambeng, and Tantara 2 abandoned their villages and fled to safety in Bunkpurugu, Wenchike, and Yunyoo in Ghana.

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Report says Ghana risks terrorist attack

Meanwhile, in Ghana, a new report says the country risks terrorist attacks due to existing triggers that have remained unresolved for many years.

YEN.com.gh reported that the West Africa Centre for Counter-Terrorism mentioned the Bawku Conflict and the Western Togoland issues as dangerous for Ghana's security.

The report explained that with their huge exploitative capacity, extremists descending on Ghana and other coast countries in the sub-region could take advantage of existing threats.

Source: YEN.com.gh

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