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The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 606th meeting held on 20 June 2016, adopted the following decision on the draft International Criminal Court Action Plan on Arrest Strategies:

Council,

1. Recalls decision Assembly/AU/Dec.590 (XXVI) adopted by the Assembly of the Union at its 26th Ordinary Session held in Addis Ababa from 30 to 31 January 2016, requesting the Peace and Security Council to consider the Draft International Criminal Court (ICC) Action Plan on Arrest Strategies and make appropriate recommendations thereon to the next ordinary session of the Assembly, through the Executive Council;

2. Reiterates the AU concerns regarding the activities, including their erosive impact on stability in the continent, of the ICC in Africa, which have been the subject of various Assembly decisions;

3. Agrees with those States Parties to the Rome Statute that object to the inclusion of language in United Nations (UN) Peacekeeping mandates to assist in the enforcement of ICC arrest warrants, as this will affect the neutrality and impartiality of UN mandated peacekeeping missions and undermine the ability of member states of the UN to contribute troops to UN peacekeeping operations;

4. In light of the foregoing, Council recommends to the Assembly as follows:

i) to direct African States to the Rome Statute to ensure that during the adoption of the draft ICC Action Plan on Arrest Strategies, there is no provision that includes language requiring the UN Security Council to mandate UN peacekeeping missions to enforce ICC arrest warrants in Africa; and

ii) to mandate the Open-Ended Ministerial Committee on the ICC to include this issue in its engagement with UN Security Council, the Assembly of State Parties to the Rome Statute and other stakeholders on AU concerns on the activities of the ICC in Africa;

5. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Posted by Abraham Kebede

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