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UK relations with West African countries are as varied as the region itself. Historically, ties have been much closer with the ‘Anglophone’ countries, rather than their ‘Francophone’ counterparts. This remains broadly true today, although the UK also has plenty invested in the future of Francophone countries like Mali and Cote d’Ivoire. One thing which all West African countries have in common is an interest in what the (as yet unclear) implications of Brexit will be for the UK’s development policies and programmes.

Members participating in this debate might wish to discuss a host of issues under this heading, but amongst those which might justify consideration are:

  • The trajectory of the political crisis in The Gambia, which is coming to a head at the time of writing, and the country’s future prospects
  • The continuing struggle of President Muhammadu Buhari to get on top of the multi-dimensional challenges he and Nigeria faces
  • Ongoing security challenges in Mali (and the Sahel as a whole), where efforts to defeat jihadi groups are still some way from success
  • Amidst army mutinies, how robust Cote d’Ivoire’s recovery really is following the bitter civil war there
  • Ghana’s recent peaceful transition from one president to another following December 2016 elections
  • Post-Ebola recovery efforts in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea
  • The achievements and (failures?) of regional political and economic cooperation under the auspices of the Economic Community of West African States

 For general information about UK policy in specific West African countries, google “UK and [ADD NAME OF COUNTRY].

 For information about UK aid to specific West African countries, see the government website ‘Development Tracker’.

 For BBC country profiles, click on this link.

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