News / Africa

African Union Urges Global Intelligence-Sharing Against Terrorism

Protesters march in support of the girls kidnapped by members of Boko Haram in front of the Nigerian Embassy in Washington on May 6, 2014.
Protesters march in support of the girls kidnapped by members of Boko Haram in front of the Nigerian Embassy in Washington on May 6, 2014.
Peter Clottey
The deputy chairman of the African Union (AU) has called for robust international cooperation and intelligence-sharing to help defeat increasing terrorism on the continent, following the abduction of Nigerian school girls by militant group Boko Haram, last month.

The AU has sharply condemned the abduction of the school girls and expressed concern about their plight after the continental body demanded their immediate and unconditional release. 

Erastus Mwencha says the increase in cross border crimes including terrorism, human and drug trafficking are challenges to peace and security on the continent.

Mwencha says the Boko Haram militants appear to be well organized and internationally connected, which he says enables them carryout their violent activities against unarmed civilians.

“If you noticed, the Boko Haram leader was speaking standing in front of a [military] tank,” said Mwencha. “Now, where does he get that kind of money to buy the [tank]? It is because of the connections globally, and so it is important peace and security is not only taken, at individual level, at community level, at national level, but at regional and international level,” he said.

Mwencha called for more action to combat the rise in militant groups on the continent. He says there is need for a stronger collaboration in intelligence gathering and sharing to help stem the tide of growing terrorist activities.

“Whenever we get to know the systems or networks that they use either in sending funds, we should take action,” said Mwencha. “We should also work together because most these [militants] work cross borders for us to be able to fight it and be determined to root it out. That will also require not only sharing intelligence, but also supporting each other logistically, and all other avenues,” he said.

Mwencha says the AU continues to work closely with President Goodluck Jonathan’s effort to find and free the abducted schools girls.

He says there has been an increase in cooperation among AU member states in the fight against cross border crimes.

“There is a growing and a robust system of cooperation among the member states at a regional level and, and this is also taking root at continental level,” said Mwencha.  “This requires very sophisticated networks that [would] be able to counter the activities of the terrorists, and that is where the international community comes in.”

But, some critics say African countries have been weak in combating increasing terrorism, and in seeking out international assistance to fight the threat. 

Mwencha disagrees.

“The first thing we should note here is that this is a new phenomenon. And the second aspect is that when you are looking at asymmetric war, there is no face to it. So you are dealing with a network that knows each other but you don’t know them, and so you cannot say there is unwillingness on the part of the international community. But, it’s in the nature of the war itself,” said Mwencha.”

He says there is unanimous international agreement that the sharp rise in terrorist activities in Africa requires a global concerted effort, to defeat the militant groups.
 
Clottey interview with Erastus Mwencha. AU Deputy Chairman
Clottey interview with Erastus Mwencha. AU Deputy Chairmani
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

Diplomats Work to Extend Israeli-Palestinian Cease-Fire

US Secretary of State John Kerry, diplomats from France, Britain, Germany, Italy, Turkey and Qatar gathered in Paris Saturday to discuss crisis More

Photogallery US Defense Department Warns of Arms to Eastern Ukraine

‘Imminent’ delivery of Russian rocket launcher poses threat to civilians, US says More

Video Researchers: Africa Genetically Modified Crops Held Back by Scaremongering

GM crops offer best hope of increasing productivity and coping with climate change in Africa, according to co-author of Chatham House report More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train in Underwater Labi
X
George Putic
July 25, 2014 7:25 PM
In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid