France and Africa -a year of interventions means little has changed

Africa Sustainable Conservation News

Think Africa Press
For the French military, the year 2013 ended as it began − namely, with an intervention on the African continent. In January 2013, Operation Serval was launched to repel militant Islamist groups in Northern Mali. And in December, Mission Sangaris − named after an African butterfly known for its light footprint and short lifespan − was launched in an attempt to curb the escalating conflict in the Central African Republic. In stark contrast to France’s persistent vows to disengage, 2013 saw it unable to stay away from its traditional backyard.

In an attempt to provide some explanations for France’s recent interventionism in Africa and to lay out the rudiments of its future strategy for African security, France held the ‘Elysée Summit for Peace and Security in Africa’ in December. Forty African heads of state were there together with representatives from the UN and the European Union, those…

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