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African and Arab leaders declare war on terror
By Kobia Mwirichia (PSCU)
African and Arab countries that gathered in Kuwait for the Arab/Africa Summit have declared total war on terrorism.
In a communique at the end of the 3rd Arab/Africa Summit at the Bayan Palace in Kuwait City, the Heads of State and Government agreed to exchange intelligence to combat terrorism and other international crimes.
In the communique called the Kuwait Declaration, and read by Kuwait Foreign Undersecretary Khalid Al-Jarallah at Bayan Palace, the leaders, who included President Kenyatta, expressed their firm stance against terror.
“We agree to enhance cooperation and coordination between African and Arab countries to combat terrorism, including criminalizing ransom payment to terrorists and confronting transnational crime to further support international efforts,” the leaders resolved.
They also condemned organised crime such as hostage taking, human and drug trafficking, piracy and proliferation of arms and said they would do everything to resolves the vices.
The leaders also renewed their commitment to the common principles of respect for national sovereignty of States and their territorial integrity as enshrined in the Constitutive Act of the African Union and the Charter of the League of Arab States.
The Heads of State and Government stressed their commitment to the protection of human rights and respect for international humanitarian law so that it can contribute to global security, stability and development.
They also reaffirmed their resolve to strengthen cooperation between Africa and the Arab region on the basis of a strategic partnership to maintain justice, international peace and security.
The leaders welcomed the progress made by African and Arab countries in improving respect for human rights and good governance in their respective regions.
“We strongly condemn terrorism and trafficking of all forms in Africa and in the Arab Region, particularly in the Sahelo-Saharan Region epitomized by the severe crisis in Mali, and request Africa and the Arab countries to support the implementation of the United Nations Integrated Strategy for the Sahel,” the Communique said.
The leaders also agreed to decisively address the causes of conflict and violence in Africa and the Arab world and thus create a conducive environment for prosperity of the people of the two regions.
To address youth unemployment, the leaders resolved to formulate policies that support economic growth, adopt financial regulations that can guarantee sustainability and also boost poverty reduction methods.
They expressed their full support for regional integration through increased volumes of Africa-Arab trade, investment and deepened market integration that can significantly generate employment and reduce poverty.
“Countries concerned are encouraged to pursue and consolidate their efforts. We call upon the international community and international financial institutions to support these countries through debt relief as well as lifting economic sanctions applied on some of them,” the communique said.
The leaders agreed to promote South-South Cooperation between African and Arab countries and build closer relations between the governments and peoples of the two regions through frequent visits and consultations at all levels.
They also urged relevant stakeholders in the two regions to find peaceful settlements to political problems and support progress made in peace building and post-conflict reconstruction and development.