The UK Minister for Africa, James Duddridge, has called on the new Coalition for the Sahel, of which the UK is a member, to adopt a strong focus on tackling the drivers of instability in the region and to ensure humanitarian principles guide all of the coalition’s work.
The Coalition is a new international initiative supporting security, political, and development efforts in Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, and Chad. Members of the coalition include all the governments of the region, France, and the EU.
Speaking at the coalition's international meeting on June 12, 2020, Duddridge praised the creation of the initiative and called for it to work across three key areas:
- Tackling the drivers of instability;
- Providing a joint vision for addressing instability in the region; and
- Working to ensure that human rights and humanitarian principles are integrated into all coalition efforts and are included in the terms of reference for the initiative.
The UK is the third-largest humanitarian donor to the region and has provided over £500 million (US$615 million) in bilateral development and humanitarian assistance since 2015.