Ambassador Cherith Norman Chalet
Acting Deputy Permanent Representative
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York, New York
June 5, 2020
Thank you, Mr. President, and thank you, Under-Secretary-General Lacroix, for your briefing today. The situation in the Sahel remains one of the United States’ top security concerns in Africa, and that the challenges of COVID-19 make it all the more important for the international community to work together.
The G5 Sahel Joint Force remains the long-term solution to reestablishing security in the Sahel. The United States is committed to supporting the Joint Force by providing equipment, training, and advisory support to fill critical capability gaps on a bilateral basis and continue to call on other countries to do the same. We commend the steady progress we have seen over the past few months in Joint Force operations.
But Joint Force operations alone will not be enough. Root causes of conflict must be addressed through coordinated humanitarian aid and long-term assistance in health, agriculture, citizen-responsive governance, democracy, and human rights.
We urge the signatory parties to the Algiers Accord to act on their commitments and swiftly implement the agreement. The provisions of the Accord will have a stabilizing effect not just in northern Mali, but also in the entire Sahel region. Once the Government of Mali and those of its partner countries take real, substantive action on the Accord, they can focus more resources and attention on terrorist threats that are spreading in the region.
The sustainability of our collective efforts to stabilize the region will depend on the progress of the governments, civil society, and private sector in G5 Sahel states to create effective, citizen-responsive governance; increase access to opportunity for all citizens; and respect and embrace human rights, accountability, and inclusiveness. Also, critical will be increasing the meaningful participation of women, youth, and marginalized groups in decision-making. Together, these endeavors can achieve durable peace and stability and unleash the potential of this vital region and its people.
Thank you very much.