The Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU), at its 662ndmeeting held on 24 February 2017, in Addis Ababa, adopted the following decision on Cross-Border Movement of Peace Spoilers and Responses to the Challenge:


1.  Takes note of the briefings made by the representatives of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU), United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA) and United Nations-African Union Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID);

2. Notes with deep concern that cross-border movement of spoilers in particular, non-state actors and negative forces, still remains one of the major challenges to the efforts towards resolution of conflicts and crises in Africa. In the same context, Council also notes with concern that spoilers continue to undermine the welfare and resilience of communities in conflict and crisis situations in the continent;

3.  Acknowledges that spoilers take advantage of, and exploit the porous borders and ungoverned spaces, as well as the lack of effective presence of state authority in parts of some Member States where they create safe heavens and rear bases from which they launch their activities;

4.  Stresses the need for sustainable solutions to persistent conflicts and crisis situations wherever they obtain in Africa. In this regard, Council underscores the importance of addressing the root causes of conflicts in a holistic manner, covering the political, social, economic and environmental factors that would have caused the conflict or crisis situation;

5.  Also stresses the importance of adopting a preventive approach in this regard, through implementing a number of measures including the following:

a)      Enhancing cooperation between and among national intelligence services, including sharing of information and joint border patrol exercises in order to more effectively monitor the cross-border movement of peace spoilers;

b)      Fostering the capabilities of the national security forces in order to maximize their abilities to face the challenge of peace spoilers;

6.  Encourages increased cooperation and coordination of efforts between and among Peacekeeping missions, particularly those deployed in neighboring countries, in order to ensure their effectiveness in mapping, monitoring, tracking and neutralizing the peace spoilers. Furthermore, Council urges peacekeeping missions to share information and emulate best practices of other peace missions, such as joint border monitoring of movements of spoilers and establishment of joint task forces;

7.  Emphasizes the importance of full implementation, in good faith, of all agreements that would have been reached by the parties or groups involved in any given conflict or crisis situation, as well as the need for inclusive and genuine political solutions to crises and conflicts;

8.    Underlines the need to effectively combat the proliferation and illicit circulation of small arms and weapons, as well as to track and expose or name and shame all those who provide material, logistical and financial support as well as vehicles to peace spoilers;

9.  Urges the A3 to articulate, promote and defend African common positions regarding the issue of peace spoilers, wherever such issues may arise, during the decision-making processes within the UN Security Council, on matters relating to peace and security issues in the African continent;

10.   Also underlines the need for effective collective regional efforts in fighting peace spoilers, mindful of the fact that some peace spoilers operate in more than just two countries. Furthermore, Council stresses the need for mutual confidence and trust building between and among the participating countries of a region fighting peace spoilers, and encourages for the sharing and exchange of information amongst the concerned countries;

11.  Underscores the importance of ensuring the eventual exit of peacekeeping missions, bearing in mind that this is preceded by a thorough assessment and review of the mission on the basis of the mandated tasks, with a view to preventing the creation of security vacuums immediately following the exit of the missions;

12.  Underlines the need to ensure a phased approach in implementing AU policy decisions on free movement of people and goods, mindful of the variances that exist between and among Member States and their legitimate security concerns;

13.  Stresses the importance of ensuring that the AU plays a leadership and coordination role in all peace missions in the African continent. In the same vein, Council also stresses the need for the Regional Economic Communities and Regional Mechanisms for Conflict Prevention, Management and Resolution (RECs / RMs) to remain fully engaged with, and address, the problem of peace spoilers;

14.  Council looks forward to future engagement with both the United Nations Security Council and the RECs/ RMs on the issue of peace spoilers;

15.  Decides to remain actively seized of the matter

Posted by Abraham Kebede

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