The two leaders discussed the possibility of an Israeli delegation going to Sierra Leone to evaluate assistance in various fields: Water, communications, energy and security. The possibility that Israel might enlist other countries to assist Sierra Leone was also raised.
“Equally, I know that you've suffered the ruins of a horrible civil war from which you're recovering now for these last years and we want to be part of that assistance, to help build Sierra Leone to a brighter and better future. This is something that you are leading and we're more than ready to help Sierra Leone rebuild its country and build a future for its people.
“In that spirit, I want to welcome you to Jerusalem. You know that Israel is coming back to Africa in a big way, and Africa is coming back to Israel. You're in West Africa. We intend to visit it at least once, possibly twice, this year for a gathering of leaders, so this will be an opportunity to meet you again as this one is an opportunity to further strengthen our ties.”
In his response President Koroma said: “Let me at the outset express profound sympathy to the victims and the families of victims of the recent truck attack here in Jerusalem.”
He added: “Any act of violence, any wanton destruction of lives and properties anywhere demands condemnation by everyone. While I deplore the attack, I believe that the cause to a lasting solution of every conflict is not the shedding of innocent blood. It is in the exercise of restraint and constructive dialogue. This may be long, tiring and painful, but ultimately it is the surest path for a peaceful resolution to conflict.
“I am heartened by your efforts in rebuilding relations with Africa. To this end I applaud your recent visit to a number of African countries and your unique and historic meeting with African leaders in the October UN General Assembly meeting. Sierra Leone is grateful to the government and the people of the State of Israel for the support you provided us during our very difficult moment in the fight against Ebola. It is only a friend will support a friend that is in need. And the Sierra Leonean people are most grateful for that.
“We believe that it is about time to rekindle our long-standing bilateral fraternal relationship. My delegation and I are in Israel to strengthen those political and economic ties founded by those before us. We are here to seek greater cooperation in the various fields and aspects of socio-economic development including in agriculture, in water, ICT, defense and security.
“I am delighted to have been exposed to the capacity of Israel. In the past few hours we have had meetings of various sectors and we believe that we are here to cooperate at a government-to-government level and also invite the Israeli private sector to go out there and explore investment opportunities. I believe that both countries can work strongly together in the interest of both countries, in our efforts in repositioning our relationship as it was just about independence.
“Let me also seize this moment to extend an invitation to you in your next tour of Africa to visit Sierra Leon.”