The Seychelles President, Mr. James Michel, will be traveling to London this week on a guest of government visit, at the invitation of the British Prime Minister, David Cameron.
The Seychelles President has been invited to attend the London Conference in Somalia, where he is expected to reiterate his December 2011 appeal to the international community for increased commitment and support to peacekeeping forces within Somalia, as well as targeted interventions against all criminal and terrorist groups, to displace hubs of criminal activities.
“Piracy is rooted in the political and humanitarian crisis in Somalia. I have appealed to world leaders to take action in Somalia itself, in order to implement a comprehensive plan to end the turmoil and suffering there. Somali piracy is not just a regional problem, it is an international one, and it requires an international response to ensure that Indian Ocean maritime routes are safe again,” said President Michel ahead of the conference.
Seychelles will also be seeking support for strengthening the capacity of coastal states to better defend the maritime zones, allowing for improved patroling and surveillance capabilities, as well as the improvement of intelligence sharing networks that will allow for a more efficient and systematic approach in targeting criminal networks, with particular attention to the financiers of piracy.
During his visit, President Michel will also have an audience with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, and hold high level talks with the British government on future anti-piracy cooperation in the Indian Ocean.
The President will be accompanied by Minister for Home Affairs, Environment, Transport, and Energy, Joel Morgan; the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Jean-Paul Adam; and the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Seychelles, Dr. Rolph Payet.