April 30, 2022 (ENA) Ethiopian Defense Minister Abraham Belay has called on the Eastern African Standby Force (EASF) to take concrete steps towards resolving and managing conflicts in the region.
In his speech at the conclusion of the three-day EASF Panel of Elders induction workshop here in Addis Ababa, the minister underlined that the prevalence of conflicts in many parts of the East African region calls for much more work from the standby force.
The minister explained the commitment of African leaders to see a stable continent across its regions.
The leaders of the continent have cemented their commitment by establishing the African Union Peace and Security Council as part of the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA), he noted.
According to him, the Eastern African Standby Force is one of the important pillars of this architecture. “It emanates from our determination to ensure ownership of African issues by Africans themselves.”
In line with this principle, EASF has been established as a regional mechanism with the aim to enhance peace, security and stability in our region, Abraham stated.
EASF has thus far passed through significant stages of development. “It has ensured its readiness to respond to threats to peace and security in the region and beyond by attaining and maintaining full operational capability. This is indeed a big step forward.”
However, the defense minister noted that “the prevalence of conflicts in many parts of our region calls for much more work from this organization in terms of taking concrete steps towards resolving and managing these conflicts. This calls for deploying more tools in order to ensure peace and security in the region.”
Africa has a rich wisdom and tradition of ensuring peace, security and stability, Abraham said , adding that EASF has taken its very first step to contribute in the prevention and resolution of conflicts by using these African assets.
Further, he also called on member states of the region to support the Panel of Elders.
He concluded, “I would like to thank the EASF member states for availing eminent personalities with rich experience and wisdom in peacemaking to serve in the Panel of Elders. Taking this opportunity, I call upon member states to play our indispensable role of supporting our regional mechanism by provision of technical, financial, human and material resources.”
Abraham finally urged the Panel of Elders to knock on the doors of leaders and other stakeholders as needed.