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Home arrow newsitems arrow French Foreign Minister Fabius ao to EuroFora+on Mali area: Security linked to Democracy+Development

French Foreign Minister Fabius ao to EuroFora+on Mali area: Security linked to Democracy+Development

Written by ACM
Tuesday, 19 February 2013

*Paris/Quai d'Orsay/Angelo Marcopolo/- Speaking to Journalists in Paris, including "EuroFora", French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius and Mali's Prime Minister   Diango Cissoko, as well as other well informed sources at the Quai d'Orsay (See Infra), just after the Breaking News about the Abduction of a whole Family of Tourists with 4 Children at nearby Northern Cameroon, added to another kidnaping at Nigeria's North, by violent Terrorists reportedly reacting to France's military help to Mali's Government, appeared to agree, in substance, that the current Priority is to guarantee the Securisation of all that Area, and its Democratic Development, which are so linked that one can't go without the other :


- After pointing from the start to the "3 aspects" of actions currently needed at Mali : "Security, Political Dialogue and Elections, as well as Economic Development", Fabius had an ostensibly Friendly  greeting with a Tuareg representative from Mali's Northern area, right in front of "EuroFora", (as an experienced politician, that we have already met since his 1st visit to the Council of Europe when he was serving as French National Assembly's President).


+ As for Mali's Prime Minister Cissoko, (who had just met, yesterday in Brussels, with EU Commission's President Barroso), he also denounced the fact that what you can do with a given sum of Money in the South of the Country, often needs up to 3 times more in order to be done at the North, as he said, apparently criticizing the lack of Security and Democratic Unity, (eventually added to thus provoked Corruption), which hinders also Economic Development.


The point on the current need to ensure an elementary Security to the wider surrounding area also as an indispensable means to release the region's in fact important Development potential, among others, also via MulttiNational Projects to transport nearby Nigeria's Gas Exports (i.e. currently the Biggest recent Findings of Energy resources in the World, even more than Egypt's Nile Delta) towards Europe and other Countries that could benefit f.ex. by a kind of "Trans-Saharian Gas Pipeline", straight on from Nigeria up to Algeria and the Mediterranean Sea, continuing via Italy and/or Ships to France's Marseille Foss II NLG ,new terminal, Spain's equivalent infrastructures, etc;, as recalled by "EuroFora", was considered as at least interesting t be considered seriously, as reacted in substance, carefuly but positively, the new French Foreign Ministry's Press Director and Spokesman, (who had earlier served at New York), Philippe Lalliot.


+ Irish EU Council's rotating Chair, Minister for EU affairs Lucinda Craighton's recent anouncement, earlier at EU Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committtee's Hearing organized in Strasbourg by its President, German ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP Elmar Broc, that EU currently examines the preparation of a possible Mission to check Borders between key South Mediterranean Countries, such as Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, etc., and Sub-Saharian African Countries, such as Mali, etc, by using mainly Civic Security means inspired inter alia by "FrontEx", (EU's External Borders' guards), including f.ex. High Tech Satellite Monitoring and/or Command/Communications' systems, etc., was, meanwhile, positively welcomed also by other French Foreign Ministry's well informed sources, specialized to Africa, speaking later tp "Eurofora", pointing to a parallel discussion on similar issues recently at the Quai d'Orsay.


Such moves sould topically and usefully boost also EU's Civic aspects of European Security and Defense policy, in parallel and in addition to its Military aspects, strengthening further its "Dual" nature, supported by EU Parliament and December 2012 EU Summit in Brussels (comp. "EuroFora"s relevant NewsReport from the spot).


Contrary to what some still believe in Europe, erroneously claiming that "Mali is far away from the EU", etc, it's indeed enough to just See and Compare f.ex. a Map for the above mentioned Nigerian - Algerian - Italian (etc). Trans-Saharian Gas Pipeline project, with another Map showing where so-called "Islamic Extremist Groups" suddenly appeared recently all throughout the surrounding area, next to Mali, between Nigeria, Cameroon, etc. and Algeria-Tunisia-Libya, etc., (often confused amidst a too recent Nebula of various small Terrorist Groups curiously mushrooming lately at that precise region, as the Foreign Ministry's Deputy Press Ditector and Spokesman, Vincent Floreani observed agreeing in substance with "EuroFora"), in order to clearly realize that the Spatial, Temporal and Functional "Coincidences" are so Striking that some might even speculate there about an eventual so-called Geo-Political "Complot" Hypothesis, even if I think that it's not the case, as another Diplomatic source spontaneouly observed, during a discussion with "EuroFora".


To put it in a nutshell, in addition to the necessary SafeGuards against fast-spreading Terrorism, there is also aVital need to Develop the area's Economy, possibly in a way of mutually beneficial projects of cooperation between Europe and Africa, etc., , some of which indicate an Important Potential which shouldn't be missed, (be it in Energy Resources and/or otherwise), while also Protecting the Local Populations.

So, while the initial, Front-line Military action,  in order to Help Mali's Government to recuperate its "Territorial Integrity" at the North, (as Foreign Minister Fabius observed), appear to have succesfully advanced, from now on, there are still Serious issues of Securization, as well as of a Democratic organization, with sufficient Dialogue and Economic Development, wich must be solved now, thanks also to the Beginning of EU's "Training" Mission on the spot, destinated to help Mali build its own efficient National Army, while also backed by France and African a.o. forces, addd to EU's parallel Decision to start unblocking its Development Aid and co-organise, together with France, an International Donors' Conference to help the area's Economic Development, since the Govenment of Mali accepted to hold "Elections" soon, as well as to launch a National "Dialogue" with various Political groups.

Such moves should go hand by hand also with the necessity to seriously investigate and punish any eventual Abuse, by whoever it might have been committted against any local population, against EU and UNO's standards, clearly added French Foreign Minister Fabius, and this promisse was confirmed by Mali's Prime Minister Cissoko, who denounced any alleged abuse as "unacceptable", anouncing that all alleged violations of human rights would be investigated, so that, if proved, their perpetrators would face Sanctions.


+ The Prime Minister of Mali clearly promissed, also, that "All Communities" inside the Country would be associated to a comprehensive and inclusive process of National "Dialogue", in addition to the "Elections" that he anounced for "July", while observing also that many Tuareg at the North of the Country are, in fact, Peaceful and seeking a Reconcliation through Political Dialogue.

The crystal-clear "Conditions" for participationg in that process are naturally to Respect the "Territorial Integrity" of the Country, and to exclude any practice of Terrorism, stressed French Foreign Minister Fabius, while also adding that among various Compromise-making mechanisms, "Local/Regional De-Centralisation" could be included among some Positive Ideas on how to find Solutions to conflicts.


In the Medium-Long term, such forthcoming developments throughout the surrounding area, should be bettter backed, from a Security point of view, by a fully-fledged International "Peace Keeping Mission", that UNO's Security Council could decide, in order to Bettter fix some Organisational, Logistics, Cooperation and Legal issues, thanks to a more adequate Structure for the Future, anounced French Foreign Minister Fabius.



(NDLR : "FlashNews", ie. a Brief version of a "DraftNews" already sent, earlier, to "EuroFora"s Subscribers/Donors. A more accurate, full Final Version might be published asap).


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Recent developments proved that Europe can suceed to overcome challenges by aiming at great objectives, and this is needed also in 2009, said EU chairman, French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

    - "It's in the name of Great Ideas, Projects, Ambition and Ideals, that EU can overcome" challenges, stressed Sarkozy at EU Parliament in Strasbourg, in conclusion of a dense 7 months EU Chairmanship. "It's even easier for Europe to have Great projects, able to overcome national egoism, instead of limiting itself only to small projects" (unable to do alike), he observed.     

- "Europe must remain Ambitious and understand that the World needs her to take Decisions". "The World needs a Strong Europe", which "thinks on its own, has convictions, its own responses, its imagination" : "A Europe which does not limit itself into following" others, (as it did in the Past, when it followed USA, f.ex. on Bosnia). On the contrary, "Europe should undertake its own responsibilities", he said, after a series of succes in stopping the War between Russia and Georgia, and organizing the 1st EuroZone's Summit in Paris, which incited the Washington DC G-20 Summit to extend similar decisions World-wide.  

    - "When you sweep it all under the carpet, prepare yourself for hard tomorrows", he warned. "What hinders decisions is the lack of Courage and Will, the fading away of Ideals", he stressed before EU Parliament's 2008 debate on Human Rights and Sakharov prize on Freedom of thought attributed by MEPs to Chinese cyber-dissident Hu Jia, followed by an EU - Turkey meeting on Friday.

    - "I don't abandon my convictions" and "I will take initiatives" on EU level also in 2009, Sarkozy announced later. "France will not stop having convictions and taking initiatives" on Europe. + "It's an Error to wish to pass over the Heads of those who are elected in their Countries" : "It's an integrism I always fought against"', he warned.
French EU Presidency faced 4 unexpected Crisis :

- An institutional crisis, with the Irish "No" to EU Lisbon Treaty, just before it started. A geopolitical crisis, wth the threat of War between Russia and Georgia risking to throw Europe back to Cold-war divisions, on August. A World-wide Financial and Economic crisis, arriving at a bad moment before crucial 2009 EU elections. And even a Strasbourg's mini-crisis, with EU Parliament's roof curiously falling down, from unknown reasons, in a brand new building on August, provoking an unprecedented transfert of the 2 September Plenary Sessions...

But it wasn't enough to stop Sarkozy ! On the contrary, it stimulated him...

- "The better way to deal with the recent problems of EU institutions (as the "3 NO" by France, the Netherlands and Ireland) is to take them as a "Test" in order to find solutions closer to Citizens' concerns", said later in Strasbourg Sarkozy's new choice as Ministe for EU affairs, Bruno Le Maire.

- On the Institutional front, Sarkozy gave Time to the Irish to think about it, and stroke on December a deal including a New Referendum after the June 2009 EU Elections, in exchange of a promise to keep the rule of "one EU Commissioner for each EU Member Country", and some opt-outs on Defence and Fiscal EU policies, Abortion, etc. If the Irish get a "Yes" Majority, then the institutional package could be completed in 2010 or 2011 on the occasion of Croatia's probable EU accession.

He was accused in Strasbourg to upgrade EU Council and downgrade EU Commision, but he replied that "strong Political initiatives by EU Council reinforce also the more technical role of EU Commission, under the political-technical leadership of its President", all 3 "working together with EU Parliament".

- But, meanwhile, Sarkozy energetically spearheaded an Historic 1st Summit of EuroZone's 15 Heads of State and Government at EU's core, exceptionally enlarged to a partial participation of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, on October 12 in Paris' Elysee palace, which started to tackle succesfully the growing world Financial crisis.

    It also paved the way for its endorsement by a subsequent Brussels' 27 EU Member States' gathering, before it all come to Washington's G-20 Summit. And "Europe was united, it asked for the 1st G-20 Summit, and it will also organise the next G-20 Summit on April in London", he observed.   

 But a Conference with EU, Russia, African and other Developing Countries, hosted in Strasbourg shortly after Washington G-20 Summit by the French EU Presidency, took a Resolution asking to enlarge participation to Global Economic Governance. Many found, indeed, illogic and unacceptable that f.ex. states as Turkey were given a seat at G-20 level, while all African Countries, and even the African Union itself, representing the greatest Continent on Earth, were excluded...

    Meanwhile, even USA''s "Paulson No 3" Plan, was, in fact, inspired by Europe's No 1 Plan", Sarkozy observed, largelly applauded by MEPs.

    And "Europe showed Solidarity" by mobilizing some 22 Billion credit for Hungary, 1,7 billion for Ukraine, as we do nowadays for Baltic States, etc., he added.

    The move on Economy was extended on December by an EU stimulus' plan totalling some 200 billion Euros, including 5 Billions released by EU Commission for big Projects, as well as various parallel National plans for Economic revival, (fex. 26 billions in France alone). They might appear limited, compared to USA President-elect Obama's reported plan to boost the American economy with 800 billion $, but at least succeded to overcome Europe's divisions for the first time on Economic governance, opening new horizons.

- The French President stressed even harder the unique role of an active EU Council's chairmanship, when he moved swiftly and efficiently, at the beginning of August, to succesfully stop War between Russia and Georgia, at the last minute, which threatened to bring Europe back to Cold War division.

"We (EU) also wanted to avoid a situation like in Bosnia, in the Past, when EU was absent, so that our American friends took their responsibilitues, and EU only followed", despite the fact that the conflict took place in Europe. Now, it was the EU who took its responsibilities".

A roadmap towards a new PanEuropean Security policy, before which all unilateral moves to place new Missiles (from USA or Russia) would be freezed, was proposed by Sarkozy after a meeting with Russian president Medvedev, at the eve of Washington DC's G-20 Summit.

Ukraine's "European" character was stressed at a Sarkozy - Jushenko Summit, September in Paris, while EU adopted on December an "Eastern policy", in which, "I'm convinced that our (EU's) future is to find with our Neighbours the conditions for Economic Development. Peace and Security, by explaining them that.. they must respect (Human Rights') Values, and adopt behaviors different from the Past", explained Sarkozy in Strasbourg.

Meanwhile, the "Union for the Mediterranean" was created, since July's Summit if 45 Heads of State and Government in Paris, as "an organisation for a permanent Dialogue, that we need", mainly in order to tackle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, by bringing together, for the 1st time, Israelis and Arabs, where "Europe must be present, in order to avoid a frontal clash".

- "If Europe doesn't take its part for Peace in the Middle-East, nobody else will do that in our place", Sarkozy stressed.
    Meanwhile, other EU Agreements were brokered during the French EU Presidency on Immigration, (fex. common Asylum rules, etc), and Climat- Energy :

    - On Climat-Energy, the 2007 German EU Presidency had fixed a triple 20% aim for 2020 (20% renewable Energies, 20% reduction of CO2 emmission, 20% energy efficience/economies), and the 2008 French EU Presidecny realized that, making the necessary compromises in order to modernize EU's industry, but without throwing some former Central-Eastern European Countries into abrupt Economic break down risking "social explosion".

    - Defence-Security EU policy was mainly postponed for April 2009, since both German chancellor Merkel and French president Sarkozy want to strike a deal with the new American president Obama in Strasbourg's NATO Summit.

    However, with all these 4 unexpected Crisis diverting attention to other urgencies, People wil wonder now, what happened to the famous deal proposed by freshly-elected French President Sarkozy on Turkey's controversial EU bid, back on August 2007, to continue EU - Turkey negotiations, but on the double condition that core chapters, intrinsequally linked with EU Membership, will be excluded, and that a collective Reflexion and Debate on Europe's future would start before the end of 2008.

    It was meant to reply to the crucial question : What kind of Europe do we want in 10 or 20 Years from now : A large Market, or a Political Europe, with a popular identity ? In Sarkozy's thinking, presented in his 2 landmark speeches on Europe in Strasbourg, shortly before and after the 2007 Elections, (on February and July 2007), Turkey's controversial EU bid would be incompatible with the second choice.

    It's true that EU Commision's Chairman, Jose Barroso, (who had notoriously declared, as former Portuguese Prime Minister, that he found "nonsense" the idea that Europe might become equal to the US), had repeatedly tried to avoid that Sarkozy's criticism on Turkey might start winning a larger audience in Europe, preferring a discrete "wismens' committee" work. And that most of the personalities later chosen in order to participate in a Committee on Europe's Future, are too much linked with Socialist parties and/or American policies, to be really critical of USA's notorious wish to impose Turkey to the EU, as Sarkozy had noted himself since March 2007..

     - "It's on EU Council's presidency to take political initiatives. EU Commission has other competences", stressed Sarkozy. The "European Ideal" is to "build Europe with the States, not against them". "Ask Europeans to chose between their countries and Europe won't work. You don't choose between your two parents : We must add them together".

    "France and Germany have an Historic Duty to work together, precisely because of what happened to the Past. We have to work hand by hand. We cannot be separated.It goes beyond me and Mrs Merkel today, Mr Schroeder and Mr. Chirac yesterday. It's not a choice, it's a duty to Europe and to the World".  "We need Germany, as Germany needs Europe". Compromise is inevitable, here as everywhere, and each one made some steps towards eachother's positions.

    But "it's true that Mrs Merkel didn't chose her Socialist partners, while I chose mine", Sarkozy said, in an indirect hint that the Socialist Minister of Finance in Germany might be a cause of minor past disagreements in Economy, which were overcome in recent negotiations.

    "We (France and Germany) have particular duties in Europe", but "in a Europe of 27 Member States, it's not enough for France and Germany to agree between them.

    "I always thought that Great Britain has a special role to play in Europe. ... Now, everybody "saw what it cost payed the UK for having been too exclusively open towards the US (and) Financial services. Europe needs the UK, but also the UK needs Europe" :- "We were able to face the hardest moment of the Financial crisis because the UK clearly chose Europe", stressed Sarkozy, reminding Gordon Brown's exceptional participation to the Historic 1st Heads of State/Government Summit of EuroZone, October 12 in Paris (See EuroFora's Reportage from Elysee Palace then).

     - "Some look at Europe with old glasses aged 30 years ago. While we must look at her in relation to what it will be in 30 years" in the Future, Sarkozy concluded.


2009 EU Elections were won by Parties against Technocracy and Turkey's controversial EU bid, while the 1999-2004 Majority Abstention trend decelerated. What should be done in 2009-2014 ?


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