EU aviation security mission in South Sudan to start in October
The European Union is preparing to launch a new civilian mission in October 2012 to strengthen aviation security at Juba International Airport in South Sudan.
The new mission, called EUAVSEC South Sudan, will, inter alia:
- advise the South Sudanese authorities on aviation security
- train security and law enforcement officers working at the airport
- provide technical assistance
- help coordinate security activities.
EU High Representative Catherine Ashton said: "EUAVSEC South Sudan will work to raise the security at Juba airport to internationally accepted standards. This is important for the economic development of South Sudan and for the efforts to prevent the airport from becoming a target for terrorism."
Landlocked South Sudan's scarce, mostly unpaved road network is impassable during the rainy season and makes the country heavily dependent on air traffic. Improving security at Juba Airport will allow for increased flow of passengers and goods, boosting trade and the country's development.
The mission will be headed by Lasse Rosenkrands Christensen, from Denmark, who will take up his duties on 1 September. A Chief Superintendent in the Danish police, Mr Lasse Christensen has extensive international experience, including from a UN Mission in Sudan, where he was the Chief of Logistics for six months.
Headquartered in the capital Juba, EUAVSEC South Sudan has a budget of 12.5 million euro and is scheduled to last for 19 months.
The mission will be conducted under the EU Common Security and Defence Policy and is part of a comprehensive EU strategy to assist the country, which gained independence in July last year.
Since 2010, the EU has allocated 285 million euro in development assistance to South Sudan up to 2013, funding projects such as construction of roads, health facilities and schools. It also provides substantial humanitarian aid, with experts from the European Commission working on the spot together with international partners, including the United Nations.
EU operations - EUAVSEC South Sudan
Council decision on the EU aviation security mission in South Sudan, 20 June 2012 (full text in PDF)
Council conclusions on the Roadmap for Sudan and South Sudan, 23 July 2012 (full text in PDF)
EU relations with South Sudan (EEAS website)
European Union at United Nations website on Head of Mission appointment
United Nations in South Sudan (UN website)