Foreign Affairs MEPs conclude their visit to the Gambia and Senegal

Foreign Affairs MEPs conclude their visit to the Gambia and Senegal

On 4-6 April, a delegation of six Members of the European Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, headed by the Chair of the Committee David McAllister (EPP, Germany), travelled to the Gambia and Senegal to discuss geopolitical and regional challenges and the EU’s partnerships with these two countries. Safeguarding democracy, promoting stability and security in West Africa is of paramount importance, said MEPs.

During their visit to Banjul and Dakar, the delegation met with representatives of government, as well as with parliamentary counterparts to discuss global and regional issues of mutual interest. They engaged with representatives of civil society, officials from UN bodies, as well as heads of EU member state diplomatic missions. MEPs also paid a visit to an EU funded project in the Gambia, to better understand EU financial support to the country’s people.

The Gambia

After high-level meetings with representatives of the Gambian government and National Assembly, the Chair of the Committee on Foreign Affairs David McAllister said: “The Gambia is a solid and reliable partner for the EU. We welcome the Gambia’s commitment to multilateralism and the defence of a rules-based system, including our shared values on strongly condemning Russia’s unjustified war of aggression against Ukraine. The EU has supported the Gambia since the ‘first hour’ of its democratic transition in 2017. We continue to stand by the Gambia in all efforts towards achieving important milestones in its democratic consolidation process, to which the EU has allocated a financial support envelope of EUR 119 million for the period 2021-2024. This represents one of the highest amounts of EU support per capita in West Africa. We encourage the Gambia to finalise the long-pending constitutional reform, security sector reform, the transitional justice process and sustainable reconciliation. We expect the Gambia to approach these crucial topics in an inclusive consultation process in a spirit of political consensus building, and with the involvement of civil society.”


Following discussions with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Senegal and the President of the National Assembly, as well as the Chairman and Members of the country’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, Mr McAllister said: “Senegal and the EU have a long-standing sustained partnership, strong trade relations, as well as financial support to the benefit of Senegalese citizens in line with the Plan Sénégal Emergent, as well as Global Gateway investments along the Dakar-Abidjan strategic transport corridor. Our shared values of democracy and rule of law underpin this partnership, including its parliamentary dimension. We value Senegal as an important regional actor, including through its active involvement in ECOWAS. The threats to stability, security and democracy that West Africa faces are of mutual concern. Our interests converge on the need to prevent spillover effects and to work towards sustainable peace and security in the region. On the issue of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine, we count on Senegal as an important partner in upholding a rules-based international order and the principles of the United Nations Charter. The EU stands by African countries in addressing the detrimental impact of Russia’s war of aggression posed by the food security crisis and associated rise in costs, and has mobilised support of EUR 15 million to Senegal.”

Composition of the delegation

Five other Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs took part in the delegation: Committee Vice-Chair Ms Željana Zovko (EPP, Croatia), Mr Sven Simon (EPP, Germany), Mr Tonino Picula (S&D, Croatia), Mr Javier Nart (Renew Europe, Spain) and Mr Jean-Lin Lacapelle (ID, France).


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