To ask Her Majesty’s Government what recent reports they have received about unrest in the Sahel. (HL563)
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: ?The UK is deeply concerned at the scale of terrorist and inter-community violence in the Sahel. In recent weeks, we have seen a number of horrific attacks with tragic consequences for people in the region. The UK condemns these attacks, including, most recently, those conducted against the Malian and French armed forces on 1-2 November, and offers its deepest condolences to those affected.
As part of the UK’s new strategic approach to Africa we are increasing our support to the Sahel, bringing together our development, diplomacy and defence expertise to help address instability and poverty in the region. Our increased engagement includes the deployment of 250 personnel to the UN peacekeeping mission in Mali next year and the expansion of our work to address the long-term drivers of conflict.
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what contributions they are making to the proposed Multi-National Joint Task Force and the G5 Sahel Joint Force in the Sahel. (HL564)
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon: Since 2016, the UK has contributed £5 million to the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF), on top of our assessed contributions through the EU’s Africa Peace Facility. We also support through the deployment of UK personnel, who provide technical and strategic support, to the MNJTF headquarters in N’Djamena. The UK has supported the G5 Sahel Joint Force (G5SJF) bilaterally and through the EU. We contributed £2 million of bilateral support in 2018/19 and are continuing to support this year. We are also providing technical support to cooperation between the G5SJF and the UN peacekeeping mission in Mali, MINUSMA.