Darsilameh Border Crisis: Authorities Hold Talks with Senegalese Counterparts

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By Assan Bah

The Gambia government through a delegation headed by the defence Minister has on Sunday held talks with its Senegalese counterparts to resolve the on ongoing crisis at the Dasilameh-Tranquil border in the West Coast Region.

The delegation which first held a meeting with the community of Dasilameh later proceeded to Touba the other side of the border in Senegal.

Mr Abubacarr Jeng the National Security Adviser said they held positive talks with their Senegalese counterparts and have agreed on some decisions. “The first agreement is the soldiers [Gambian and Senegalese] will return to where they were before 2016. To ensure smooth operations the Battalion commander in Yundum [Gambia] and Dioulouloung [Senegal], the Police Commissioner in Brikama and the Gendarmerie in their area will sit and discuss, the respective commands will assign their troops to patrol their designated places.

He said: “The two border commissions will go through the documents and demarcate the border.”

He advised community members to remain calm to avoid conflict as the two governments will resolve the problem in peace.

The security advisor revealed that they have established a roadmap and promised that the problem will be resolved within three (3) years.

Giving a feedback of their talks with their Senegalese counterparts, Serign Modou Njie, the Minister of Defence said, “the coming of the Senegalese soldiers into Dasilameh with their arms will stop, the two forces will all return to their original places; the two zone commanders will establish a committee which will be responsible for patrolling the buffer zone with no problem, the place will not be left without security. Another agreement we made was to embark on sensitization.”

He however said no person is allowed to do anything that will bring conflict from either of the communities. “If anyone sees something which he or she believes is not right, go and report it to the authorities.”

The defence Minister called for calm and peace as he said government is doing everything possible to guard the safety of its citizens.

“None of the soldiers have the right to say this is where the border stops, they should leave it to the authorities responsible for the border to do the needful,” he warned.