IGAD Members Urged to Work Collectively to Deter Threats of Terrorism, Conflicts in Region

Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) member countries should work collectively and find solutions in order to deter the threats of terrorism and conflicts being witnessed in the region, IGAD’s Security Sector Program Director Commander Abebe Muluneh said.

Countries in the Horn of Africa are endowed with a plenty of natural resources.

However, instability, threat of terrorism, and climate change, among other things have been the major problems currently affecting the region.

Analysts say that conflict and instability in the Horn of Africa creates a safe haven for terrorists.

Hence, making the necessary efforts to sustainably address the prevalent conflicts and instability, being observed in the region, should be a priority of IGAD member countries.

In an exclusive interview with ENA, IGAD’s Security Sector Program Director Commander Abebe Muluneh said that Al-Shabaab and other terrorist groups have been conspiring to destabilize the region.

One of the reasons for this is the recurring conflicts and instability being witnessed in the region, the commander pointed out.

He stressed the need to take collective action to deter the threats of terrorism by developing a sustainable solution to the increasing conflict in the region.

“Al-Shabaab and Daesh, force that aspires to establish Islamic state, have been operating in the region. One of the reason for this is the existence of weak government in Somalia that has been serving as safe haven for the groups. The migration from Yemen has also been expanding to our region.

The terrorist groups in Syria look for a vacuum following their defeat. This vacuum has been available now in the East Africa Region. For instance there is threat in Sudan. If the problem in Sudan is not resolved, it is believed that the terrorist groups will use the vacuum for their actions.”

Moreover, Commander Abebe elaborated that the geo-political competition in the region is the other reason for the instability, but the intervention of a third party has its own contribution in disrupting the stability of the region.

Noting that there will be no one that benefits from war, the commander mentioned countries, that are not able to come out of their complex problems as good examples in this regard.

The situation in Yemen, Syria and Libya has similar elements. Previously these countries were peaceful where their citizens conduct trade and farm by enjoying the stability and peace. However, there was enormous foreign intervention in these countries. Several foreign countries had computed in the conflicts of these countries. But, at the end of the day what we have found was the collapse of states. Libya has collapsed eventually. Syria has also been devastated harshly and Yemen as well, he elaborated.

“All this points to the fact that war takes you out of the good life and throws you into fire and hell. So everyone has to work hard to avoid war.”

Therefore, he urged, all parties should do their part to solve the problems in East Africa and ensure the peace and security of the people of the region.

In this regard, IGAD is carrying out many activities the commander said, adding it is important to work hard to build the capacity of member countries, strengthen regional cooperation and implement international laws and regulations.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency