BENIN : External security commitments and internal political developments Spécial

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The statement made on February 26 by the US Ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, at the 46th meeting of CARICOM Heads of State and Government, drew attention to an important initiative in Benin. The country plans to deploy over a thousand security forces to Haiti, in response to the deteriorating security situation there. This decision is motivated by security concerns in Haiti, despite the similar challenges Benin faces on its own border with Burkina Faso due to the threat of terrorism. The historical ties between the two nations, illustrated in particular by the emblematic figure of Beninese origin, General Toussaint Louverture, reinforce Benin's willingness to lend its support to Haiti. Indeed, this is not Benin's first security intervention in Haiti, having already sent forces on training and stabilization missions in the past.

On the political front, Benin's electoral code has been amended. Members of parliament voted to amend the electoral code, despite opposition from the parliamentary minority. This decision follows a request from the Constitutional Court for a correction to avoid overlapping dates for the 2026 general elections, and to settle sponsorship issues. However, the changes made go beyond the Court's requests, prompting criticism from the opposition. Several appeals were lodged by the opposition and a group of jurists, denouncing a "text of exclusion". Despite these challenges, the Constitutional Court validated the new electoral code, affirming that it complied with the Constitution in all its provisions. This decision was greeted with discontent by the opposition, who described the code as "a code of shame". Despite these reactions, President Patrice Talon promulgated the new electoral code.