Posted by: APO | 20 May 2008

The Special Representative of United Nations Secretary-General for West Africa Attends the Manor River Union Statutory Meetings

The Special Representative of United Nations Secretary-General for West Africa Attends the Manor River Union Statutory Meetings

Monrovia, Liberia, 14-15 May 2008


UNOWA – Dakar, 17 May 2008: The Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for West Africa, Mr. Said Djinnit, attended the statutory meetings (Council of Ministers and Summit of Heads of State and Government) of the Mano River Union (MRU) held in Monrovia on 14 and 15 May 2008.


In addition to the initial members of MRU (Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone), Côte d’Ivoire also attended the meetings as the new member of the organization. The deliberations focused on the revitalization of the MRU and its secretariat, and on the food crisis.


In his statement at the Summit’s opening ceremony, the Special Representative conveyed the greetings and support of the United Nations Secretary-General and that of all United Nations staff working for peace and development in the subregion. He reiterated the strong commitment of the United Nations to support the efforts of the MRU leaders and countries towards seeking sustainable peace and development. He also highlighted the fact that the deployment of three major peace operations in the subregion was a clear testimony to that commitment.


Referring to the Secretary-General’s initiative to mobilize the international community in addressing decisively the food crisis, he stressed the importance of seizing the opportunity to rededicate subregional, regional, continental and international efforts at promoting agriculture and rural economy, and fostering cooperation with a view to attaining food security. He expressed his confidence that, as the MRU leaders are determined to act together, they will devise appropriate action to prevent conflicts from reoccurring and to consolidate peace, building on the gains so far achieved in the subregion. He encouraged leaders of the region to address common challenges posed by security sector reform, cross border criminality, including the alarming drug trafficking and arms smuggling as well as the terrorist threat, which are ruining the economies and destroying the very fabrics of societies.


The Special Representative was very encouraged by the inspiring statements made by the MRU leaders at the opening session during which they stressed their determination to seek collective solutions to the common problems in the subregion. He pledged to strongly support their efforts through the mobilization of the capacities of the United Nations system and the promotion of common synergies.


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