‘The Peacebuilding Fund works to prevent and resolve conflicts in countries affected by fragility in regions close to us, such as the Sahel. We are therefore making an additional contribution to the Fund,’ said Minister of Foreign Affairs Ine Eriksen Søreide.
The Peacebuilding Fund has proven itself to be one of the UN’s most effective tools for stabilising countries that are emerging from conflict, and for preventing conflicts from flaring up again. The Peacebuilding Fund has intensified its efforts in the Sahel region considerably in 2018, which accords well with Norway’s own priorities.
‘The countries in the Sahel and Lake Chad regions are badly affected by conflict, poverty and the impacts of climate change. Because of the Sahel’s proximity to Europe, the situation in the region also affects Europe’s security and welfare, and is doing so to an increasing degree,’ said Ms Eriksen Søreide.
Weak state structures and porous borders have enabled Islamist terrorist groups to gain a foothold in the Sahel. Conflicts are threatening stability in several countries in the region, and have caused the civilian population enormous suffering. The human cost of people smuggling and irregular migration to Europe through the Sahel is huge.
On 10 September, the Government launched a strategy for Norway’s efforts in the Sahel region for the period 2018-20, and the increased support for the Peacebuilding Fund is part of the follow-up of the strategy.
The UN Peacebuilding Fund was established to strengthen the UN system’s capacity for strategic, long-term peacebuilding. Norway has contributed to the Fund since its launch in 2006.