Dear Common Effort Community members and friends,
We hope that you are all doing well enjoying the summer holidays despite the challenging conditions we are all dealing with. As we are still facing COVID-19 restrictions and developments for the second half of 2020 are hard to predict, the Common Effort Steering Group has decided to postpone Common Effort 2020 to June next year. There are simply too many uncertainties to properly organise a one week event with participants from different countries and continents.
What we can do though and to ensure continuity of our Sahel focus, we will organise one Common Effort workshop in October 2020 and one in March 2021 in a hybrid format that will allow both online and real participation for a limited number of people. The workshops are limited in scope and time and are without a High Level Event.
The next workshop “Trust-building in the Sahel” will take place on 22-23 October 2020 at the CIMIC Centre of Excellence in The Hague.
We will discuss latest political and security developments and the impact of COVID-19. Will the Sahel Coalition be able to strengthen security, re-establish state structures and regain trust of the population? What is the impact of COVID-19 on trust-building and strengthening of local ownership and how does the new EU Sahel Strategy promote trust-building and local ownership?
As you might have read in our previous newsletter, five working groups have drafted concept notes focusing on trust-building and local ownership from different perspectives:
G5 Sahel Joint Force – Justice Nexus
Trust, Human Rights, Gender and Dialogue
Development and Security in fragile border areas
Engaging Youth for Security
The working groups have started cross-group activities, such as online meetings with relevant stakeholders in the Sahel. In the run-up to Common Effort 2021 (CE21), the working groups will integrate latest developments in the Sahel into their concept notes – for example the impact and side effects of COVID-19 in the countries. This will ensure further comprehensiveness and creation of local ownership from the start.
You will have the opportunity to contribute with your expertise and knowledge. A call for paper on trust-building is being prepared for the workshop in October. In September, a limited number of people will receive an invitation for the workshop on “Trust-building in the Sahel”.
If you have further ideas or questions related to the upcoming workshop or any other issues, please do not hesitate to get in contact with us.
For now, stay safe and healthy and enjoy your summer break!