- The Brazilian government has pledged both financial and human resources support for Guinea Bissau to conduct elections scheduled for 28 June this year.
The Brazilian Foreign Minister, Celso Amorim, said the country will also assist in the reform of the defense sector and security in Guinea Bissau, including the establishment of a military court.
Bissau polls which were slated for 2 May were postponed to end June after the ruling party, opposition, military and civil society leaders agreed with foreign observers that it was necessary to organise the campaigns and polls properly.
Minister Amorim said that Brazil has considerable experience in organising elections, particularly in the area of electronic voting, and had previously actively participated in the election in Guinea Bissau.
"We're going to send a military mission to assist in training, coaching, and in the military doctrine, which is very important to be separated from politics in Guinea Bissau, and are prepared to cooperate with any other international effort to take place or a need," the minister stated.
Brazil currently presides over the strategy of the Commission for the Consolidation of Peace in Guinea Bissau in the UN.
The elections are estimated to cost the impoverished country CFA francs 2.5 billion (euro 3.8 million), out of which the Bissau government holds it can only raise 10 percent. The European Union (EU) has already indicated it will assist the Bissau government with a budget of euro 1.5 million. The EU delegate to Guinea-Bissau has also urged other donors to contribute with at least another euro 1 million.
The impoverished and chronically unstable West African country has come increasingly to the attention of European governments as a key state necessary to stabilise.
Guinea-Bissau is struggling to combat drug trafficking, human trafficking and other organised crime, taking advantage of its large and torn coastline and weak and corrupt state and security institutions. Drug cartels have also been suspected of being involved in several political murders in the country.
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