UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said Thursday, September 9, in an interview with Agence France-Presse that he feared that the Afghan example would give ideas to jihadist armed groups in the Sahel, calling for a strengthening from “Security mechanisms” in this region.
In the Sahel, “I fear the psychological and real impact of what happened in Afghanistan”, with the seizure of power by the Taliban, he said. “There is a real danger. These terrorist groups [au Sahel] may feel excited about what happened [en Afghanistan] and have ambitions beyond what they thought a few months ago ”, added the UN chief.
The Secretary General was also concerned about the rise of “Fanatic groups, with an ideology where death for example is desirable, groups available to do anything. And we see armies disintegrating in front of them ”, he added.
“We saw this in Mosul in Iraq, in Mali during the first push towards Bamako, we saw it in Mozambique (…). This danger is real and we must seriously think about its implications on the terrorist threat and how the international community must organize itself in the face of this threat ”, said Antonio Guterres.
“Strengthen security mechanisms”
According to him, it is “Essential to strengthen security mechanisms in the Sahel”. Because “The Sahel is the most important weak point, which must be treated. It is not only Mali, Burkina or Niger, now we have infiltrations in Ivory Coast, in Ghana ”, he clarified.
Faced with the announced withdrawal of the Barkhane force by France and the disengagement of Chad, Antonio Gutteres proposes the creation of“An African counterterrorism force, with a mandate under chapter seven (providing for the use of force) of the Security Council and with earmarked funds, which can guarantee a response to the level of the threat”.
Corn “I fear today that the response capacity of the international community and the countries of the region will not be sufficient in the face of the threat”, he lamented.
The UN chief has been trying for several years to give the G5 Sahel force, formed by Chad, Mauritania, Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso, a strong UN mandate accompanied by collective funding of the organization.
First financial contributor to the UN and fearing that the force of blue helmets deployed in Mali might lose its neutrality, the United States has so far refused this approach, ardently defended also by France. “This blockage must end. It is absolutely essential ”, however asked Antonio Guterres.