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Liberia, Niger Review Bilateral, Regional and International Issues

President Sirleaf and President Issoufou Mahamadou Review Bilateral, Regional and International Issues were at the core of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s one-day working visit to the West Africa State of Niger on Thursday, July 21, 2016.

President Sirleaf was accompanied to Niger by a number of key Government officials, including Foreign Minister V. Kamara, Lands, Mines and Energy Minister Patrick Sendolo, Presidential Adviser Abdullai Dukuly, as well as National Security Agency Director Fomba Sirleaf, among others.

According to an Executive Mansion release issued in Monrovia, President Sirleaf and President Issoufou Mahamadou held face-to-face conversion in a brotherly climate, following which a working session was extended to the delegations accompanying them.

The working session focused on in-depth review of bilateral relations between the two countries and exchange of view on African and other international issues. At the bilateral level, the two Heads of State reviewed the various fields of cooperation between the two countries, in particular the issues of security, economic cooperation and regional and sub-regional integration. They welcomed the links of the brotherhood and solidarity between the two countries and expressed the need to strengthen such cooperation.

The two West African leaders welcomed the opportunity afforded by President Sirleaf’s official working visit to prospect the areas of security, economic cooperation and regional and sun-regional integration and agreed on ways and means to establish better relations of cooperation.

At the regional level, President Mahamadou reiterated his warmest congratulations to President Sirleaf for her assumption of office as the new Chairperson of ECOWAS. The two leaders conducted the examination of the socio-political situation prevailing on the African continent by reaffirming their commitment to contribute to the promotion of peace, good governance and the strengthening of democracy in Africa.

They also committed themselves to promoting the economic integration of the sub-region through the creation of a single currency in West Africa and the development of roads, rail, and energy infrastructure and pledged to convene with the other Heads of State of Member countries of ECOWAS to continue in conducting in-depth reflections to the effectiveness of the fluidity of the movement of persons, goods and services in the regional space.

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Presidents Sirleaf and Mahamadou urged the African Union, ECOWAS, and the United Nations Security Council to strengthen their efforts so that peace and security prevail in Africa. They also welcomed the decision of the 27th Ordinary Summit of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of the African Union on the launching of the African Union passport.

In tackling the security context pertaining to the sub-region, including Sahel-Saharan Space, the two leaders have strongly condemned the resurgence of terrorist acts in the region of Sahel, particularly Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Burkina Faso and Cameroon among others and expressed their willingness to combine their efforts to restore peace and security in the space.

In addressing the Socio-political situation of Mali, the two leaders expressed their deep concern and condemned the resurgence of violence in northern Mali, marked by terrorist attacks and the challenge of the peace agreement by certain armed groups, at the same time, welcoming the efforts of the international community and the Government of Mali for their constant commitment in the quest for peace.

On the international level, Presidents Sirleaf and her Nigerien counterpart condemned the terrorist attack in Nice, France, and deplored the deterioration of the political climate prevailing in Turkey following the failed coup.

A Joint Communique was issued to conclude the visit. Also speaking at the end of the visit, President Sirleaf expressed her deep gratitude to her brother, President Issoufou Mahamadou, President of the Republic of Niger, the Prime Minister, Government and people of Mali for their warm welcome and hospitality and also invited the Nigerien leader to pay an official visit to Liberia.

The invitation was accepted and the date will be specified by a mutual agreement through diplomatic channel. President Sirleaf and delegation returned home on Thursday evening. 

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