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Official speeches and statements - December 23, 2016

Published on December 23, 2016

1. Senegal - Bilateral relations - Germany - Fight against terrorism - Statements by M. François Hollande, President of the Republic, at his joint press conference with Mr Macky Sall, President of Senegal - excerpts (Paris - December 20, 2016)

(...)

The fight against terrorism is a challenge that concerns us all, throughout the world. I haven’t forgotten what’s happened in recent weeks and months in Africa, where attacks have taken place in Burkina Faso but also in Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria and Chad. We’re making active efforts. There’s also the battle we’re fighting against terrorism in Africa. It’s also what allows us, as far as possible, to be safe here in France and in Europe.

The President of Senegal and I shouldered our responsibilities when Mali made an appeal to us in January 2013, and we were able to respond then with a French and African intervention that enabled us to drive back the terrorists. Today our responsibility—I talked to President Macky Sall about it—is to ensure we can continue making Mali secure, and Senegal will play its role in MINUSMA [United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali], particularly in central Mali, where there are still a number of groups we must fight. I’m also aware that Senegal must also guarantee its own security.

Together, for several months already, we’ve been setting out the conditions for cooperation between our armed forces, but also in terms of what we can do for domestic security. Bernard Cazeneuve, then interior minister, now Prime Minister, went to Senegal in October to finalize this cooperation and the implementation of commitments we made together. I wanted this state visit, the first since 1992—which gives you an idea of its importance—also to coincide with the confirmation of major projects and the signature of numerous agreements.

Among those agreements I emphasize trains, because they’re an ambitious choice for Senegal and a sign of confidence for France. Senegal has decided to build an urban train [network] to enable both its population and its goods to have modern infrastructure. For French businesses, it’s a source of pride, because they were selected to build these trains and ensure their operation. We also wanted to prepare the funding methods for this infrastructure. That’s what we’ve put into practice, through the agreements by the AFD [French Development Agency] and the Finance Ministry.

A second major project close to our hearts is water. It’s about providing modern resources compatible with our climate commitments, in the framework of what President Macky Sall wants to do, namely build new districts, new towns. I remind you that Senegal played a major role in the signature of the Paris Agreement, and there too we have a sign of mutual trust. Nearly a million inhabitants of Dakar will be supplied with water thanks to this project.

Finally, we have very high-level cultural cooperation, because there are, first of all, people who create links between our two countries, high-calibre artists. I’m thinking of Ousmane Sow, who has just passed away, and I know how significant he was; I decorated him myself during my visit to Senegal. Together we’re going to promote—and it was you who took the initiative—cooperation between the Musée du Quai Branly and the major cultural project you want to carry out in Dakar, with the Musée des civilisations noires. (...)


2. Libya - Joint Statement by the Governments of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States (Paris - December 23, 2016)

One year after the signing of the Libyan Political Agreement (LPA) in Skhirat, Morocco, the governments of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States commend the Presidency Council (PC) of the Government of National Accord (GNA) for its efforts to restore unified governance, prosperity and security to Libya. We congratulate the GNA and the Libyan people on their successful operation to eject Daesh from Sirte and applaud the Libyan people’s courage in confronting the scourge of Daesh and other terrorist organizations.

The PC of the GNA has our full support as it addresses ongoing security and economic challenges for the Libyan people. We reaffirm our support for the LPA as a transitional roadmap to a democratically elected government in Libya, recalling UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2259, which endorses the Rome Communiqué of December 13, 2015 and calls on members to support the GNA as the sole legitimate government of Libya and reject official contact with parallel institutions outside the LPA. We commend UNSMIL’s efforts and take note of ongoing regional activities towards a broadly based and inclusive implementation of the LPA.

We condemn any threats of use of military force in Libya, including in Tripoli. We call on all parties to resolve their differences through dialogue and national reconciliation.

We encourage the PC of the GNA to strengthen its internal cohesion and tackle with renewed determination the multiple security, economic and social emergencies facing Libya today, first among them building a secure environment where all citizens can feel safe and protected by unified Libyan forces operating under civilian oversight, including the Presidential Guard, devoted to serving and protecting Libyan institutions. We encourage the PC to step up preparations for its establishment and speedy deployment.

We welcome the approval by the PC of the budget for 2017, and urge Libya’s state financial institutions to ensure their full cooperation with the PC, by enabling the country’s legitimate executive authority to carry out an effective economic policy addressing the most urgent needs of Libya’s population.

We call on all Libyan parties to engage meaningfully in continued political dialogue and support the PC as it charts a peaceful transition to national reconciliation and an elected and unified government that represents all Libyans.

Through maintaining a unified approach in support of these principles, the international community will work to help Libya through this transitional period. But in the end, Libyans alone must decide their country’s future.

(Source of English text: French Foreign Ministry)

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