The European Union (EU) has approved an €89 million (US$89.4 million) package for the fight against terrorism that has been plaguing parts of Cabo Delgado, since October 2017. This sum will be invested in the training of the Defence and Security Forces, to make them more operational and self-sufficient, as well as in the purchase of non-lethal protective equipment.
The aid was announced on 13 July by the outgoing Ambassador of the European Union, Antonio Sanchez-Benedito Gaspar, following an audience granted to him by President Filipe Nyusi.
The ambassador, who is closing his four-year term of office in Mozambique, said that "with regard to equipment, the European Union has already approved a package of €89 million for training and purchase of non-lethal equipment for 11 Marine command units that are being trained, including uniforms, vests, helmets, communication systems, drones, vehicles, a field hospital, and other individual protection materials".
According to the diplomat, great advances have already been made in the fight against terrorism and the Mozambican government, with the support of allied countries, has managed to control the situation in general terms, "but the attacks continue and even in some places that had not previously been affected". "Hence, we have to continue to be present", said the Ambassador. "Our objective is to help control and manage the situation".
Regarding the meeting with President Nyusi, Gaspar said that it was an opportunity to review the past few years that were very intense and at the same time to strengthen and deepen the partnership between the European Union and Mozambique.
He revealed that the EU will start a new cycle of cooperation aligned with the priorities of Mozambique, but with a focus on youth. "We will put a lot of focus on youth in this new era and we will also pay more attention to Mozambique's green and digital transition and peace and security issues", he said, whilst congratulating the country on the Demobilisation, Disarmament and Reintegration (DDR) of the former guerrillas of Renamo, the main opposition party.