ALGIERS, July 10 (Xinhua) -- Algeria and the European Union (EU) share convergent vision on the situation in the African Sahel region, particularly the crisis hitting Mali, EU Coordinator for Counter-terrorism, Gilles De Kerkove, said here Tuesday.
"Approaches of the EU and Algeria are converged in terms of finding a settlement to the crisis in Mali," the official APS news agency quoted the EU official as saying at the end of his meeting with Algeria's Minister for the Maghreb and African Affairs, Abdelkader Messahel, in the capital Algiers.
"The meeting aimed at rounding up the situation in the Sahel region, more particularly in Mali, and discussing how the EU and Algeria's approaches are converged to reach a settlement to this multifaceted crisis," De Kerkove said.
For his part, Messahel said "the meeting evoked also counter- terrorism in the frame of partnership between Algeria and the EU, in addition to permanent consultations between the two parties on different critical issues ... in the Sahel region."
Algeria reaffirms its position for a political solution for Malian crisis, and the solution should include support and guidance to Bamako, while safeguarding the territorial unity and the sovereignty of the country, the Algerian official noted.
"We do favor dialogue between the different parties and believe that there is still a chance for a negotiated settlement for the crisis in northern Mali," the minister added.
The Tuareg rebels have proclaimed the Azawad region in northern Mali, on borders with Algeria, as an independent state in April.