Britain’s foreign secretary hopes to mend broken relations with Gambia

 

Boris Johnson said he has spoken to the secretary general of Commonwealth to speed up Gambia’s decision to join the multinational institution within months. 

boris-johnson

The controversial British Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, who became the first holder of his position to visit the country since independence in 1965, said he has spoken to the secretary general of the Commonwealth to speed up the West African nation’s desire to rejoin the institution.

The move could show The Gambia join the institution within months.

Gambia’s former president Yahya Jammeh withdrew his nation from the group in 2013 calling it “an extension of colonialism” institution.

“I am very proud that President Barrow wants to return the country back to the Commonwealth. That is a wonderful thing for us and I talked about that last night to the secretary general of the Commonwealth to speed up and get it done as soon as possible,” Boris said.

Gambia is a former British colony but the two countries have had troubling relations during the 22 years of the Jammeh.

Aid

During troubling times in relations with The Gambia, the British government reduced the operation of Department for International Development (DfID), United Kingdom government department responsible for administering overseas aid, in the small nation.

“There have been difficulties between our side in the UK and the previous administration of Mr Jammeh. It has been hard for us to have a relation to the fullest and we now have an opportunity to do more, particularly the Department for International Development,” he said.

“We will be coming back with all sorts of proposals… This is a new opportunity and as President Barrow said, the new Gambia, that is a project we want to support.”

He added that Britain and Gambia will also work together toward “tackling the migration crisis” which is “very vital for Europe and as much as for Africa”.

 

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