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WAI Director General takes part in the International Workshop on Germany´s West Africa Policy, Berlin, May 24-25, 2018 and holds a Conference on Mali at the Helmut Schmidt University of Hamburg, 28 May 2018

In collaboration with the Institute for Theology and Peace (ithf) – the peace research institute of the Catholic Church in Germany – and its director Professor Heinz-Gerhard Justenhoven, Professor Michael Staack from the Helmut Schmidt University (HSU) - University of the German Armed Forces of Hamburg and his team organized an international workshop on German West Africa policy.

German Meeting

The workshop took place on May 24-25, 2018, at Dietrich-Bonhoeffer-Haus, Berlin. The aim of the workshop was to critically reflect on Germany´s policy towards the West African region based on a comprehensive approach (development, economy, politics, security, migration).

During the workshop, the following topics have been discussed: the (new) concept of Germany´s West Africa policy, possible conflicts with French policies in the region and the new approach of the Macron presidency, current developments in West Africa, the perception of Germany´s new strategy/interest from a regional angle.

The workshop assembled 20 academicians from West Africa (Mali, Ghana, Senegal), France and Germany and high-ranking ministry officials from the Federal Chancellery, Federal Foreign Office, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development as well as Federal Ministry of Defense. The very fruitful, open and productive discussions proceeded within five panels:

- Peacebuilding in Mali – on the right track?

- Western model of democracy vs. African social structures?

- Security cooperation within ECOWAS and Sahel G 5

- German politics in the West African region

- What are the most pressing challenges in West Africa?

All participants agreed on the existence of a scientific research gap on current German West African policy. Therefore, further research and academic exchange between Germany and West Africa is needed. The organizers intend to host a similar event in Dakar (Senegal) next year.

The agenda of the workshop is available here

After attending the Berlin workshop where she presented a contribution on the evaluation of political and economic development in Mali as well as that of Germany's commitment, WAI Director General was received on 28 May at the Helmut Schmidt University (HSU) of Hamburg on the invitation of Prof. Michael Staack. Prof. Traoré held at this occasion a conference followed by discussions on the current developments in Mali, including political stability, security and economic development.

German Meetin 1

 

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