Annan to urge coordinated approach in helping to stabilize West Africa aide

With the Secretary-General set to present a report on the issue tomorrow, his Special Representative for the region, Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah, told a briefing that Mr. Annan would highlight how the proliferation of small arms as well as the use of child soldiers and mercenaries “contribute to the suffering of the population and the deterioration of the economy and social and physical infrastructure” in West Africa.Mr. Annan is also expected to stress the importance of a harmonized UN approach to this problem “instead of each agency going its own way,” Mr. Ould-Abdallah said.Asked to name key hotspots in the region, he cited the border between Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, and said the frontier area between Liberia and Côte d’Ivoire also faces a “serious” problem of instability. read more