BRUSSELS, Jan 22 (KUNA) -- European Union (EU) and African Union (AU) foreign ministers agreed Tuesday that cooperation in the field of peace and security is a central pillar of their partnership.
"New threats to international and regional peace and security, in particular the spread of terrorism, piracy, radicalisation, violent extremism, the illegal arms trade and organised crime, have an impact on the stability of both continents. These threats require concerted efforts," the ministers were cited as saying in a joint communique at the end of their 2-day meeting in Brussels.
All these efforts will contribute to Africa's ambition of "Silencing the Guns by 2020," they said, adding that support to stability in crisis-affected regions needs to be reinforced through coordinated engagement.
Speaking at a press conference after the meeting, EU High Representative Federica Mogherini said the talks "confirm our common determination to build upon our partnership and move towards a stronger and more political partnership and friendship between both continents."
The meeting focused in particular on peace, security and governance, in addition to trade and investments, she pointed out.
On his part, Richard Sezibera, Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Rwanda, said "we come today to have an AU-EU ministerial meeting at a time when Africa itself is coming of age in terms of its determination to speak with one voice at the global scene."
"The discussions we have had around the table have allowed us to believe that we are on the right path," according to Smail Chergui, AU Commissioner for Peace and Security.
"Because not only have we shared values and the same determination but also because we are facing the same challenges as two continents," he added.
Ministers welcomed the AU's revised migration policy framework for Africa and shared the conviction that multilateralism is the most effective mode of international cooperation to address global issues, the statement said. (end)