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SEYCHELLES AND MAURITIUS PUT PIRACY ON COMESA AGENDA

19.06.2009

The Seychelles and Mauritius delegations at the Common Market for Easter and Southern Africa (COMESA) Summit have asked COMESA to take a proactive approach in the fight against piracy in the region as this will benefit all member states.

The Seychelles delegation at the 13th COMESA Summit was led by President James Michel who used his intervention to further inform fellow heads of state and government of the scale of the piracy problem and also suggest ways of improving coordination, surveillance and other mitigation measures.

Seychelles and Mauritius have called on COMESA to take steps to request that states adversely affected by piracy may have access to the AU-EU peace facility and to work side by side with the African Union to adopt a common position on piracy.

The President has also signalled the importance for COMESA states that a long term solution should be found for the instability in Somalia.

"The only true solution to the problem is peace, stability and development in Somalia. And we, as COMESA, need to come together to find a solution. Because peace in Somalia will benefit the COMESA region."

The President has noted the unprecedented opportunity that exists for the region to achieve unparalleled growth and development, provided that peace and stability can be perpetuated among and within member states and their neighbours.

"We have the potential to make Africa the continent of growth, the continent of opportunities and the continent of peace and prosperity. Let us work for it," said President Michel.

In a further statement the President added "If we can learn from each other, together we can create an unprecedented economic block in Africa".

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