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This panel discussion was held by WARC on Thursday October 20th, 2019 in collaboration with the Senegalese Social Forum (Forum Social Sénégalais), an active member of the senegalese civil society. Chaired by Dr Divine Fuh from Codesria, it grouped prominent personalities such as Dr Cheikh Tidiane Gadio, former senegalese minister of foreign affairs, Dr Pierre Sané, former executive secretary of the Canadian International Center for Development and Research (ICDR/CRDI) and former UNESCO deputy director and professor Fatou Sow-Sarr, a sociologist at IFAN/UCAD. The joint initiative from WARC and the Senegalese Social Forum was prompted by xenophobic developments noted lately in countries such as South Africa and Angola etc…where anti-immigrant violence erupted and cost the lives of scores of foreigners hailing from other African countries. While regretting such occurrences, Dr Sané pointed out that those countries should not be exclusively blamed for such hostile flurries of violence since exclusion and stigmatizing are also and regrettably defining features of human societies. He also insisted on the need for african governments to further develop economic opportunities for their populations to avoid such desperate and blamable reactions. Professor Fatou Sow Sarr also insisted on the need to understand the inner workings of human societies and to urge decision-makers on the continent to cultivate unity, tolerance, social living and refrain from using the populations’ anxieties and worries as political ploys for political gains. Dr Gadio more emphatically insisted on the need for Africa to be united so that artificial borders and national identities would no longer be a pretext to pitch the various human groups each against the other. He added that this was a very urgent task the more so as the continent is being gradually encroached upon by the peril of violent extremism and radicalism. The event was well-attended with over 82 gathering at WARC to hear the panelists, ask questions or contribute to their respective presentations.

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