Africa is becoming an epicentre of terrorism: Sall

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Senegal’s President, Macky Sall, says it’s extremely worrying that Africa is becoming an epicentre of terrorism.

Sall was addressing the Dakar forum on Peace and Security in Africa, the annual event that brings together presidents, ministers, diplomats and other international partners to discuss how to improve Africa’s security measures.

The Senegalese president says terrorism is a global challenge and Africa has paid a heavy price due to the phenomenon.

Sall, who’s also the African Union (AU) chairperson, says the peace and security forum comes at a gloomy time as the world suffers from the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Meanwhile, Angolan President Joao Lourenco says the war in Ethiopia in the Tigray region shouldn’t be forgotten.

He also gave an update on the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Rwanda conflict.

The Angolan leader has called for peace in the northern parts of Mozambique as the Southern African Development Community (SADC) battles terrorism there.

Peace and security in Africa under the spotlight in Dakar

Negotiators for the Ethiopian government and regional forces from Tigray were due to meet in the South African capital Pretoria for the first formal peace talks since war broke out two years ago.

The talks come after the Ethiopian military and their allies, who include troops from neighbouring Eritrea, captured several large towns in Tigray, a region in northern Ethiopia, over the past week.

The situation on the ground appeared to put the government in a stronger position than its opponents going into the talks, though it was under pressure from foreign powers, including the United States and European Union, to halt its offensive.

The war stems from a power struggle between the federal government and the authorities in Tigray, who dominated a coalition that governed Ethiopia for almost three decades until they lost their grip on power in 2018.

The conflict has killed thousands, displaced millions and left hundreds of thousands on the brink of famine.

It has also further destabilised the perennially volatile Horn of Africa region and complicated Ethiopia’s diplomatic relations with Western allies, who have been calling for a ceasefire.

The talks, mediated by the African Union, were shrouded in secrecy. Sources from both sides gave conflicting information as to when face-to-face meetings would begin, and the African Union declined to answer questions from the media.

South Africa hosts the AU-led peace process for Ethiopia