We’ve been very interested in the Accra initiative as a means to tackle threat of insurgency – Harriet Thompson

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British High Commissioner to Ghana, Harriet Thompson, says the United Kingdom is very much interested in the security challenges of Ghana and her neighbours.

According to Ms. Thompson, collaborating with Ghana and her neighbours to address the security challenges Jihadist groups and other insurgents in the region pose to national security is fundamental to the UK’s work on development in West Africa.

She said, the UK and Ghana have cultivated a very close relationship following the latter’s independence from the former, thus the need to ensure that that relationship is not threatened by invading insurgents.

Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express, she stated that the UK’s military has been collaborating with Ghana’s military in capacity building drills to prepare towards the threat of insurgents.

“It’s another area where our partnership goes back a long way. There’s a very close relationship between Ghana’s military, the UK, military, our wider security forces, but also the human development work, the work around governance and so on. That gets to the heart of the causes of the security challenges, the factors that make communities vulnerable,” she said.

Ms. Thompson also noted that the UK has been very helpful in assisting the Accra Initiative meet its objective.

“So, over the last few years since I arrived, certainly, we’ve been very interested in the Accra initiative, this regional initiative to bring together the coastal countries as well as those countries in the Sahel who are already facing quite significant violence to try to tackle those regional problems through a joint strategy.

“Minister Mitchell, our Development Minister, actually mentioned this explicitly in his speech last week as an example of the type of relationship that we want to have when we do work on development. It’s about supporting regional solutions to regional challenges.

“The problems that come from the insecurity and as to how they don’t only cause severe damage in those countries themselves, they threaten the coastal countries, including Ghana, but beyond that, as well we see directly UK interests at stake there and all manner of ways.

“The best way we think to support the region is by supporting this regional initiative, helping to improve the capacity, the capability of those members of the Accra initiative. With that layer of collaboration that means that you don’t attack the terrorists over here and they pop up here instead, you’re attacking them across the board, so there’s nowhere to go,” she said.

Source: myjoyonline.com

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