The European Strategy for Development and Security in the Sahel Rupture or Continuity?

Following the fall of the regime of Muammar Gaddafi in the autumn of 2011, the EU faced several challenges likely to generate political instability, security and humanitarian issues in the Sahel-Saharan region. These can have substantial impacts on its economic interests in the region but also within its borders. Recognizing the inextricable link between security and development, it provides strategies in various fields in order to support the Sahel States’ national strategies and policies. This Strategy raises several questions: is the Strategy for the Sahel adapted to the challenges faced by the new authorities in the region? Is it a new way to rethink the relationship between the EU and the Sahel or a mere reformulation of former cooperation policies? How can we move beyond words and make this Strategy effective? 

This is a presentation made by the author in Berlin, 12 January, 2012, at the European African Alliance Conference 2012, organized by the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy on the theme “Development Initiatives, Trade Relations and Interregional Cultural Exchange in the European African Alliance”.