Defense chiefs from across the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) have pledged greater cooperation to combat shared threats.
The September 2014 meeting of the Committee of Chiefs of Defence Staff (CCDS) in Accra, Ghana, brought together 15 defense leaders for a three-day summit themed “Strengthening ECOWAS Military Cooperation for Peace, Stability and Development.”
Officials called for greater intelligence sharing among member states and more training in counterinsurgency to bolster Nigerian security.
“Boko Haram has created mayhem in Nigeria and needs to be stopped,” said Ambassador Kwesi Quartey, Ghana’s deputy minister of foreign affairs and regional integration. “Africa cannot afford an unstable Nigeria.”
The meeting also brought together naval chiefs of defense staff who discussed the upcoming activation of a multinational coordinating center that would monitor Maritime Pilot Zone E, which includes waters off the coast of Benin, Niger, Nigeria and Togo.
The group also pledged military support to member states fighting Ebola. Vice Adm. Mathew Quashie of Ghana, chairman of the CCDS, told the group: “The military is ever ready and always the first to respond to any emergency.”