By Aisia Rweyemamu
The US government has strong policy of working with its partners in Africa, including Tanzania, to address wildlife poaching across the continent.
“We want to work with the governments in that region to ensure that this wonderful resource that they have, continues to be available for their children in the future. But also it is not used to fund activities of terrorists or other criminal elements that will bring problems to our partners in Africa.
“So it’s something that we’re very concerned about,” Assistant Secretary of State Linda Thomas said during a joint press event for African-based media.
She added: “We know that terrorist activities are being supported by all kinds of illegal activities. And I would not be surprised if it’s being supported by illegal poaching of elephant tusks in East Africa.”
On his part General David M. Rodriguez, AFRICOM Commander, said: “Our strategy is to develop partner-security capacities, strengthen relationships and enhance regional cooperation. We conduct all of our military activities in close coordination with our African partners and our partners in the US Government.”
The AFRICOM Commander added: “In East Africa, we’ve seen major progress in maritime security. In the Gulf of Guinea our programmes are helping partners to strengthen maritime security and counter illicit trafficking.
“We back American-African peace support operations primarily by helping the State Department train and equip forces from countries in east and northwest Africa that contribute to regional peacekeeping and security mission.” The commander said AFRICOM would continue to look for opportunities to better coordinate “our strategy with multinational and our interagency partners, and we will align our resources with our strategy and do the very best to ensure we are applying our efforts where they are most effective and most needed. More....