Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn and Niger counterpart Ibrahim Yacoubou; Credit: MAEE

Luxembourg Minister of Foreign and European Affairs Jean Asselborn yesterday undertook a working visit to Niamey in Niger.

At the invitation his Nigerien counterpart Ibrahim Yacoubou, Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn made a working visit to Niamey on 8 February 2018 where he held interviews with President Mahamadou Issoufou and Prime Minister Brigi Rafini.

In addition to his counterpart Ibrahim Yacoubou, Jean Asselborn also met the Minister of State, Minister of the Interior, Public Security, Decentralisation and Customary and Religious Affairs, Mohammed Bazoum, and the Minister of Planning, Aichatou Boulama Kane.

Luxembourg and Niger have been united by bonds of friendship and solidarity for almost 30 years. Bilateral relations are based on a partnership in the field of development cooperation, which focuses in particular on three sectors: basic education and vocational training, rural development, and water and sanitation.

While cooperation with Niger now also includes a security component, notably through the support provided by Luxembourg to the European mission EUCAP Sahel Niger and G5 Sahel (of which Niger has just taken the presidency), the exchanges of views of Minister Asselborn with the Nigerien authorities in Niamey confirmed the desire to intensify the economic and commercial links between Niger and Luxembourg. In this context, Minister Asselborn and Minister Yacoubou signed a mutually beneficial agreement on air transport.

The interviews in Niamey finally made it possible to review current regional and continental political events, by focusing on the situation prevailing in Niger's neighbouring countries, particularly in Libya and Mali, and on the evolution of the African Union.