Togo in the struggle against terrorism: The “Pacific Magazine” plays its part


An article from agence AFreePress (translated by CPNN)

The fight against religious extremism and terrorism in vogue in the world and particularly in the West African sub-region was at the heart of a forum organized on Saturday [June 4] in Lome by the “Pacific Magazine” supported by the Embassies of Egypt and Libya, according to the Afreepress news Agency.


According to El Hadj Moitapari Kouko, publication director of the organizing magazine, the peace forum under the central theme “Convergence for the Culture of Peace” aims to promote exchanges around the issue of peace, enlighten the public about the moral values ​​of Islam, and promote the contribution of the media to the concepts of peace and tolerance. It also aims to bring all communities to actively join the culture of peace, to share a good way of living together and to strengthen an open dialogue.

In the various panels of the forum, several personalities came to the podium to address the fight against terrorism.

In his speech, the Minister of Security and Civil Protection, Colonel Damehame Yark reported that sub-regional security environment, with borders that are porous borders to the proliferation of light weapons and small arms, is more threatened with various terrorist attacks in Mali, Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire. This, according to him, will double the “legitimate” fear of the population due to the proliferation of terrorist groups and the volatility and elusiveness of terrorists themselves.

“Today more than ever, strengthening the security of our territories is needed and it first passes internally through open collaboration between civil society, opinion leaders, religious leaders, in short the whole population and the defense and security forces, “he added.

For Atcha-Dedji Affo, CEO of the mobile company, Togocel, if the protection of populations and territories lies with law enforcement and security, success in the fight against this scourge requires the participation of each and every religion. “The terrorist has no religion, neither rich nor poor,” he noted while emphasizing that the fight against terrorism through weapons costs more than a policy of prevention.

“Islam is not a violent religion,” argued El Hadj Inoussa Bouraima, President of the Muslim Union of Togo (UMT). For him, the terrorist is a “rapist” and a “thief of peace.”

Mohamed Karim Sherif, Egyptian Ambassador to Togo is convinced that to counter terrorism, “the solution is the friendship and the action in trade.”

In total four (4) panels were developed for several hours under the themes: “geopolitical crisis in relations with the Muslim world”, the “Jihad and terrorism”, “Islam and the fight against terrorism” and “spiritual values, the guarantee of peaceful coexistence.”

The panelists included Archbishop Nicodemus Barrigah Bénissan, two academics (a Togolese and an Egyptian) and an Islamic scholar.

After the forum which is in its first edition, a united front for peace was established.

(Click here for the original French version of this article.)

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