Last week, the European Parliament published a study I co-authored with Alexander Mattelaer and Amelia Hadfield. The study looks at the main security and development challenges affecting the Sahel and takes a critical look at the European Union’s doings in the region. The Sahel constitutes the European Union’s southern geopolitical border and stability there is therefore critical to European security. The study examines the main geostrategic dynamics and actors operating in the Sahel and zooms into some of the latest developments in the region, including the consequences of the Libya conflict or the renewal of the Tuareg rebellion in Mali. While the 2011 ‘European Strategy for the Sahel’ rightly identifies the lack of governmental structures and systemic poverty as the region’s key challenges, we argue that national caveats stand in the way of a more effective European Union approach in the region.
• Please click here to download the study.