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AU says African force to have naval component

01-31-2011 13:47 BJT

ADDIS ABABA, Jan. 30 (Xinhua) -- The African Union (AU) envisions to install a naval component into the African Force in order to fight the rampant pirates along the coastline of the continent, M. Ramtane Lamamra, AU Commissioner for Peace and Security, announced here on Sunday.

"We intend to give the African Force a naval component in order that the territorial seas are protected, as well as the exclusive economic zone," M. Lamamra told the press on the first day of the 16th AU summit.

Apart from the fight against pirates, the naval component will also tackle the problems of illegal fishing and play a role of "environmental police" against the dumping of trashes into the seas along the African continent, by ships "usually from developed countries", he added.

As to the pirates attacks in the Somali seas, the commissioner reiterated that actions must be taken to deal with the roots of the phenomenon, which lie in the Somali land.

"It concerns the end of conflict, the restoration of State, the democracy and the development. In this regard, the AU is ready to strengthen its cooperation with the international community," he said.

A mission of 8, 000 troops (AMISOM) has been dispatched into Somalia to help the country to get out of about 20 years of sociopolitical chaos. The troops are also responsible for the maritime navigation control along the Somali coast.

As to the African force, the AU has decided to form the force with five pre-positioned brigades in each of the sub-region. In October 2005, Douala, the port in Cameroun, has been chosen as the logistic center of the force.

Editor:Du Xiaodan |Source: Xinhua

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