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A glimmer of hope

The UN operation in Sierra Leone provides a glimpse of hope for successful UN operations in the African continent, where there is a long gap between success stories.

The last 1700 UN troops left the capital, Freetown, on December 31, 2005. At the beginning of the new year, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said: “The UN mission has overcome a number of political and military challenges, leaving Sierra Leone much better. land than it was five years ago. ”

However, the political success is threatened by a number of economic problems that are looming for the West African country. UN special envoy to Sierra Leone Daudi Mwakawago sums up the problem briefly: "Poverty is the biggest threat to the country's stability." According to a UN source, unemployment is as high as 70 percent, which of course creates a security problem now and in the near future.

Annan has also pointed out that the need for help is no less, and expressed concern that success can be ruined if there is a belief that Sierra Leone no longer needs help. Lack of international support can cause the conflict to flare up again.

The British aid organization Oxfam is somewhat more optimistic. The organization's envoy to Sierra Leone, Marcus Thompson, told the IPS news agency: "We are confident that Sierra Leone will remain peaceful, given a stable and secure environment in which the country's development will continue in partnership with the international community."

"This is Sierra Leone's chance to prove to the world that the country is committed to human rights, peace and its own future. . .

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