EU defends youth-focused development projects

UE defende projectos de desenvolvimento centrados na juventude

The ambassador of the European Union in Mozambique defended this Wednesday the importance of development projects focused on youth in Cabo Delgado, expressing the intention to continue supporting people affected by violence in this northern province of the country.

"We will continue to work on a long-term development vision and the youth will be there at the center of all assistance and support policies," Antonio Sánchez-Benedito Gaspar said.

The ambassador of the European Union (EU) in Mozambique spoke to Lusa in Cabo Delgado, at the end of a meeting he held with the apostolic administrator of Pemba, Bishop Antonio Juliasse, a meeting in which they discussed cooperation strategies to support the populations affected by armed violence in the province.

Antonio Sánchez-Benedito Gaspar advanced that the EU has in its portfolio projects to promote inter-religious dialogue for the maintenance of peace and reconciliation in the communities, pointing the Catholic church as a fundamental partner in this process.

"The church in this sense is always an important actor," the ambassador stressed.

The diplomat reiterated the EU's willingness to continue to support the country in the face of armed violence in Cabo Delgado in the areas of security and humanitarian assistance, pointing, as an example, the announcement today of the launch of the European Union's humanitarian airlift to Pemba, with the sending of 15 tons of "life-saving equipment" and aimed at "responding to urgent humanitarian needs.

"The two planes are for equipment, humanitarian supplies, emergency 'kits' for the population affected by the humanitarian crisis," Sánchez-Benedito Gaspar said, adding that the EU has provided a total of 25 million euros in humanitarian aid in the last two years alone.

Armed groups have terrorized Cabo Delgado since 2017, with some attacks claimed by the 'jihadist' group Islamic State, in a wave of violence that has led to more than 2,800 deaths, according to the ACLED conflict registration project, and 732,000 displaced people, according to the United Nations (UN).

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