Minister of Development Cooperation Caroline Gennez and Minister of Defence Ludivine Dedonder are set to visit Niger in West Africa to meet their Nigerien

counterparts on Friday. The purpose of their two-day visit is to enhance the country's partnership with Belgium.

Gennez emphasized the importance of Niger as a partner, particularly in the face of ongoing jihadist activities in the Sahel region. Belgium and other allies are committed to supporting Niger in its fight against terrorism. Gennez warned against underestimating the impact of the growing insecurity in Niger on Europe and Belgium, citing the example of terrorist attacks carried out by groups such as the Islamic State in Europe.

She stressed the need for a safe environment for the effective functioning of infrastructure, social services, and solidarity efforts. Dedonder highlighted the collaboration between Belgian and Nigerien troops, which has increased the confidence of local security forces and the population. Belgium has been involved in Niger for several years, providing training to the local armed forces. Photo by NigerTZai, Wikimedia commons.