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AFRICA: Strengthening military cooperation in Mauritania

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Mauritania and Algeria have decided to strengthen military cooperation between the two countries. Objective: to face the security challenges. The issue was discussed during the three-day visit of the Chief of Staff and General of the Armed Forces, Bamba Mokit, to Algiers. 

The Chief of Staff of Mauritania, who has been visiting Algiers since Tuesday, 05 January 2021, was received by his Algerian counterpart. “This meeting provided an opportunity for both sides to review the state of bilateral military cooperation and to exchange views and analyses on current issues of common interest.”,” said a news release from the Department of National Defence (DND).

General Major Saïd Chanegriha declared that “this visit is of particular importance for the two brother countries and that it will undoubtedly allow them to develop their relations, particularly in the light of the evolving security context prevailing in the region.” “The strengthening of military cooperation between the two sister armies was more than a necessity to meet the security challenges facing our region, andThis can be achieved by leveraging existing security cooperation mechanisms, including Cemoc,” he added.

The Chief of Staff of the Algerian Army stressed: “The consolidation of military cooperation between our two institutions is more than desirable in order to jointly address the security challenges facing our region and examine ways and means to enable our two armies to carry out their missions in context of risks and threats from all sides”. He therefore believes that it is more appropriate to make greater use of existing security cooperation mechanisms, such as the Joint Operational Staff Committee (Cemoc), whose cooperation focuses on the exchange of information and the coordination of actions on both sides of the common borders of member countries.” To this end, he reiterated his “full willingness to work to consolidate bilateral military relations in order to face the various security challenges facing our Maghreb and Sahel regions.”

The Chief of Staff of Mauritania, General of the Armed Forces, for his part magnified “the deep historical relations that bind the two brother countries, expressing his thanks to Algeria for the multiform support it brings to the people and the army of Mauritania”.

This military cooperation complements the economic cooperation already existing between the two countries. Algeria was Mauritania’s second largest African supplier in 2018 and Mauritanian imports of Algerian products account for 20% of Nouakchott’s total imports from African countries. “For example, our exports to Mauritania were up 100% in the third quarter of 2020 (July to September) compared to the same period in 2019, reaching nearly $9 million.”, said the Director General of Foreign Trade at the Algerian Ministry of Trade, Khaled Bouchlaghem, estimating that the 2021 figures will continue their upward trend following the entry into force of the African Continental Free Trade Area (FTACAF), which introduces the progressive liberalization of tariffs and the reduction of non-tariff barriers.

       

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