Joint-Declaration issued at the conference on “Cross-border Cooperation Libya-Sahel to better counter terrorism, border crimes and organized crimes”

24.11.2022

Tunis, 22-23 November 2022

Sahel cooperation conference

We, the representatives of Burkina Faso, Chad, Libya, Mali, Mauritania and Niger, gathered in Tunis upon initiative by the EU Special Representative for the Sahel and EUBAM Libya for this conference on Cross-border Cooperation Libya-Sahel, organized together with the Regional Advisory and Coordination Cell (RACC) and CT-JUST, in the presence also of EUCAP Sahel Mali and EUCAP Sahel Niger, under the co-presidency of the Vice-President of the Presidential Council of Libya, express our firm belief in the relevance of a regional approach to fostering the management and security of borders. Conscious of the interconnection and interdependence of the issues under discussion, we consider cross-border cooperation a means of border protection and a fundamental prerequisite to a successful strategy to counter complex transnational challenges such as terrorism, cross-border criminality and organized crime.

We welcome the presence at this conference of the Minister of Interior and Decentralization of Republic of Niger and the Minister of Social Affairs of Libya.

We share our appreciation for the fruitful technical discussions and express our interest in continuing this dialogue further. Cross-border cooperation is a long-term objective of a process of progressive interactions, with the political support of each country and according to the guidance of the African Union and regional economic bodies.

In this regard, we acknowledge the important role that the European Union has in facilitating this exchange, in particular through the Libya-Sahel Coordination Forum.

We welcome the occasion to collectively examine some of the shared threats to ensuring our common border security.

We believe it is essential to adopt an inclusive, participatory, community-centered approach to ensure that borders are kept secure, whilst promoting cross-border socio-economic development and integration. To that end, the valuable role of local border communities cannot be underestimated.

We express our wish to see the European Union and the international community support our combined efforts at fostering cross-border cooperation between Libya and the Sahel region.

We also recognize the relevance of sharing lessons learnt and best practices in cross-border cooperation as well as the value of appropriate technologies in strengthening border management and security. We welcome the opportunity to have gathered here in Tunis to address this important issue and thank the host authorities for their kind welcome.

We agree to remain actively engaged on this issue, in the framework of the platform launched today with this conference.

We recommend the creation of a committee comprised of representatives from each country and partners, to ensure follow up and implementation of decisions resulting from this conference.

Read the full joint Declaration here.

Sahel cooperation conference