ROCH MARC CHRISTIAN KABORÉ, President of Burkina Faso, noted that many countries are facing scourges beyond COVID-19. If the trend continues, the Sustainable Development Goals cannot be attained. As such, he called for more international solidarity in pandemic response. However, efforts to combat COVID‑19 shouldn’t usurp the fight against AIDS, which continues to plague the African continent.
Terrorist attacks in the Sahel have destroyed development efforts in the region, primaril y in the three-border area, he warned. In response, Burkina Faso is piloting a national security policy, he said, stressing that all military operations will be conducted in compliance with human rights. However, those efforts must be supported by the international community. The situation stems from the collapse of Libya, which caused a skyrocketing of arms in the region. For this reason, the mandate of the Group of Five for the Sahel (G5 Sahel) should be placed under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, he stressed.
Burkina Faso is implementing a new development framework, focused on building peace and security, institutional reform, production transformation and human development, he continued. The national development plan will cost $34 billion, 63 per cent of which will be provided by the national budget.
As for climate change, there is an urgent need for robust and unified action, he said. In Burkina Faso, 34 per cent of the land has been degraded because of drought and endemic floods. In that context, he recalled that Burkina Faso had ratified the Paris Agreement and called on all countries to make efforts to save the planet for future generations. COP26 in Glasgow will be crucial to evaluate joint commitment and rethink post-pandemic economic recovery.
Turning to the situation in Libya, he said that it requires international attention so that a solution can be found that will contribute to security throughout the region. In the Western Sahara, he expressed support for the political process under way. Given the progress made during the two round tables in Geneva, he encouraged participants to remain committed to negotiations. Similarly, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict requires a political outlook that will allow the parties to resume dialogue. On the blockade on Cuba, he observed that the socioeconomic effects have been exacerbated by the pandemic and called for the embargo to be lifted.
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