UN Envoys meet to strengthen border security
Officer in Charge of UNMIL Moustapha Soumaré, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Côte d'Ivoire (UNOCI), Albert Koenders, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for West Africa, Saïd Djinnit, and also Force Commanders and Police Commissioners of the two missions, met in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire on 7 March with the aim of strengthening cooperation in the border region between the two Missions and the two UN Country Teams.
The meeting drew up the framework for further collaboration and development of a Program of Action, including through increased support for the national security agencies, revitalizing the military collaboration through operation Mayo and putting in place a joint community violence reduction program.
Referring to the prevailing situation, Mr. Soumaré, noted that "the challenges in the border region are well known, but now we need to put in place a plan that can be 'operationalized' and thereby have a direct impact on the situation on the ground." Concerning the revitalization of Operation Mayo, he said that concentration should be on the border situation "by re-enforcing the coordinated patrols and harmonizing information sharing between the Mission as well as between local authorities."
The meeting was also attended by representatives of several UN agencies based in the two countries and discussions were held on aligning humanitarian interventions. It was also agreed to develop a joint communication campaign that can support activities on the ground and prevent the spread of rumors and wrong perceptions.