Last updateDim, 25 Jan 2015 12pm

French Defence minister visits Congo

The French Defence minister, Jean Yves Le Drian, who arrived in Congo on Sunday has visited Pointe-Noire, where he attended a meeting on maritime security, Congolese public radio reported.

The meeting comes against the background of an incident in late January, when a Greek oil tank, the Kerela Mount, was attacked by pirates off the coast of the Angolan capital, Luanda, raising the issue of pirates who steal oil from tankers.

Some 154 attacks were recorded in the Gulf of Guinea last year.

Against that phenomenon, marines from the region are beginning to be equipped with patrol agents,such as Congo, which has secured 4 vessels from China, to be the centre for the coordination of regional action against pirates, which should begin operating in March in Pointe-Noire.

The French Defence minister, who has arrived in the Congolese capital, Brazzaville, will hold talks with Congolese president Denis Sassou Nguesso, mediator in the CAR crisis, where he will travel to on Wednesday, the last stop of his visit.

Le Drian earlier visited Chad to discuss the CAR crisis with the Chadian president Idriss Déby, who is also the current chairman of the Economic Community for Central African States (CEEAC).

Pana 11/02/2014