AU welcomes recent counter-terrorism efforts in Lake Chad Basin region

The African Union (AU) Peace and Security Council has commended the recent peace and security initiatives undertaken by countries in the Lake Chad Basin region in the fight against terrorism.

The Council, in a statement issued late Saturday, said it “welcomes the initiatives taken by the Lake Chad Basin Region, with the support of the AU Commission, through their Regional Strategy for the Stabilization, Recovery and Resilience of the Boko Haram- affected Areas, as well as the comprehensive approach adopted by the G5-Sahel and the recent decision by the Extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on the fight against terrorism.”

The AU Peace and Security Council, in particular, commended the recent decision that was adopted on September 14 by the Extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the ECOWAS on the fight against terrorism, in which ECOWAS leaders had decided to mobilize 1 billion U.S. dollars for a comprehensive and holistic action plan to fight against terrorism in the region.

The Lake Chad Basin region, comprising Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon and Niger, has been wracked by attacks from terror group Boko Haram, as the region remained a hotbed of terrorist attacks from the group.

The resilience of the insurgent Boko Haram group in the Lake Chad basin since 2009 has posed enormous security, humanitarian and governance challenges.

Last week, the Nigerian army announced that Boko Haram terrorists are fleeing out of their hideout around Lake Chad to north and central Africa sub-regions amid the all-out offensive by multinational forces.

According to Sagir Musa, spokesperson of the Nigerian army, the combined onslaught by the troops of the Nigerian army and Multinational Joint Task Force on the identified Boko Haram hideouts was causing their exodus.

Boko Haram has been trying since 2009 to establish an Islamic state in northeastern Nigeria, having killed some 20,000 people and forcing the displacement of millions of others, it was noted.