OTTAWA, Canada, September 16, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today announced a contribution of more than $1.2 million toward counterterrorism initiatives aimed at strengthening border security and judicial systems in North Africa and the Sahel. He made the announcement alongside Ramtane Lamamra, Algeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, during a visit to Algeria.
During their meeting, the ministers agreed to launch Canada-Algeria counterterrorism consultations. The two countries will seek to renew their terms, until 2015, as co-chairs of the Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF) Sahel working group.
“Algeria is a key partner for Canada in the fight against global terrorism,” said Baird. “Terrorism remains the great struggle of our generation, and Canada is committed to working with Algeria to strengthen security and counterterrorism efforts in North Africa and the Sahel.”
Canada and Algeria are founding members of the GCTF. Launched in 2011, the GCTF enables international coordination of civilian counterterrorism capacity building.
Through its Counter-Terrorism Capacity Building Program, Canada provides training, funding, equipment and technical expertise to partner countries with a view to enabling them to prevent and respond to terrorist activities.
Baird will be returning home following his successful trip to Algeria, where he met with Abdelmalek Sellal, Algeria’s Prime Minister, as well as with Foreign Affairs Minister Lamamra.
“During my discussions with Prime Minister Sellal and Minister Lamamra, we agreed it is imperative that our two countries continue to work together to enhance security and economic prosperity in North Africa,” said Baird. “I also took this opportunity to thank the Algerian government for their cooperation in the aftermath of the In Amenas gas plant attack. On behalf of all Canadians, I offered our sincere condolences to the victims of this abhorrent terrorist act.”
For more information, visit Canada-Algeria Relations.