Defense Secretary James Mattis said today that he was pleased with the results of the Aqaba Conference in Jordan, adding that the effort shows nations can work together to address shared threats.
Mattis told reporters traveling with him to Pakistan that the conference, focused on West Africa and sponsored by Jordan’s King Abdullah II, is “a reminder that when there's the political will … countries with different domestic agendas [and] different foreign policies can certainly work together.”
The conference was about undercutting or preventing the conditions that breed violent extremist organizations. A total of 44 senior officials and military leaders from concerned nations and international organizations attended.
This year, the focus was on West Africa. Past conferences focused on East Africa, Southeast Asia and the Balkans. The officials looked for ways to promote West African stability and regional security. Terror groups abound in the region, from Boko Haram and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria to al-Qaida.