Between the challenges of stabilization and reconciliation : Gabon returns to ECCAS Spécial

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At the 24th Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, major decisions were taken concerning Gabon. According to a press release issued by Gabon's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Sub-Regional Integration, Régis Onanga Ndiaye, and relayed by Agence Gabonaise de Presse (AGP), the ECCAS Heads of State Conference decided to lift sanctions against Gabon and reintegrate the country into the organization. 

The Heads of State also definitively reaffirmed that the ECCAS headquarters would remain in Libreville, the Gabonese capital. This decision comes at a time when the country is making progress towards restoring constitutional order following the post-coup d'état transition.

At the same time, Jean-Marie Bockel, the French President's personal envoy for Africa, paid a visit to Libreville, the capital of Gabon, where he held talks with the President of the transition, Brice Clotaire Oligui Nguéma. The meeting was part of a renewed military partnership between France and African countries. Although no major announcements were made during the visit, it testifies to the importance for France of maintaining its relations with Gabon, particularly in the military field. France has gradually reduced its military presence in the country over the last few decades, but maintains significant military cooperation, notably through the training of soldiers from the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) in Libreville.