Friday, December 07, 2007

Africa-EU summit addresses some issues, but not Darfur.

SOURCE: Deutsche-Welle—“First Verbal Shots Fired as Leaders Gather for EU-Africa Summit

This week, representatives of nations of the European Union (EU) and the African countries met in Lisbon for a summit that is to focus on the relationship between the continents. The EU is Africa’s biggest trading partner, but China trade between China and African nations is growing rapidly.

The summit began controversially as Britain’s Prime Minister Brown boycotted the event in response to the presence of Zimbabwean President Mugabe. Additionally, Libya’s leader Moammar Ghadafi began by asserting that the European nations that carved up and colonized Africa should now pay reparations for the damages caused. Reports indicate that while the majority of African leaders may not share Ghadafi’s views, his words underscore the uneasy relationship between the continents, borne from Europe’s imperialist past.

Other issues that will be raised at the summit include African nations’ discomfort with the economic partnership agreements “EPAs” that it feels the EU is attemting to pressure them into accepting. South Africa, the continent’s largest economy has asserted that “detrimental issues” in the EPAs—which most African countries view as unfavorable to their interests—needed to be addressed.

For the Europeans, charges that Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has committed scores of human rights abuses and undermined that nation’s economy is high on the list of issues to address.


Do you believe that the issues to be addressed at this summit are relevant? Are there more pressing issues, such as the genocide in Darfur, that should be on the table?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Definately, I appreciate what the EU id doing whether it is investing in Africa or providing aid, but working hand in hand with the African governments is not going to help with anything, on the contrary it will get things worse. Europe needs to understand that after all the African countries gained their independence that only corupt greedy individuals took over so it doesn;t matter how many summits you go through or how much money you give to these countries, it is not going to help as long as it is in the hands of these governments.