French President Francois Hollande on Friday urged African leaders to establish their own security capabilities to deal with threats in the region.
Addressing a two-day summit with about 40 African leaders in Paris, Hollande said France is prepared to train African solders for peacekeeping missions.
His comments come a day after the U.N. Security Council voted to allow France to double its forces in the volatile Central African Republic (CAR) to 1,200 troops.
Summit leaders will focus on the CAR's crisis on Saturday.
Paul Melly, Africa Program associate fellow at Chatham House, says summit leaders are discussing military strategies and strategic planning with African regional blocs.
"It is also looking at security in the wide sense of the word, economic development and combined action, working together on climate change which is a very big priority issue for France," he said, adding that sessions will be used to explore other issues as well.
Hollande opened the summit with a tribute to Nelson Mandela, the former South African president who died Thursday.