Fractured West African bloc appeals for unity

2024-02-10 00:22:43

The Nation

ABUJA - West Africa's regional bloc has ap­pealed for unity after emergency talks on the political crisis in Senegal and the withdrawal of three coup-hit countries from the group.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) extraordi­nary session on Thursday addressed President Macky Sall's decision to delay elections in Senegal just a week after Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger declared their departure.

ECOWAS commission president Omar Alieu Touray called the turmoil in Senegal a "worrying development".

The chairman of the bloc's Media­tion and Security Council Yusuf Mai­tama Tuggar urged the three coun­tries not to leave, warning their exit would "bring more hardship and do more harm to common citizens".

"We are stronger together as a com­munity," Tuggar, also Nigeria's foreign minister, said as West African foreign and defence ministers attended the council meeting in Nigeria's capital Abuja. But it was still unclear on Fri­day what measures -- if any -- the bloc had decided to take. The draft ECOW­AS agenda for the Thursday meeting had listed Senegal's crisis and the departure of the three countries as items for discussion.

2024-02-10 News