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COMMUNIQUE

 

Adopted by the Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU) at its 923rd meeting held on 7 may 2020, on the Situation in Somalia and Renewal of the Mandate of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM):

 

The Peace and Security Council,

Noting the remarks made by the Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Lesotho to the AU and Chairperson of the PSC for May 2020, H.E, Ambassador Professor Mafa Sejanamane, as well as the statement made by the Commissioner for Peace and Security, Ambassador Smail Chergui, the briefing provided by Ambassador Francisco Madeira, Special Representative of the Chairperson of the AU Commission for Somalia and Head of AMISOM, and the statements made by the representatives of the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS)  and the United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU);

Further noting the Report of the Chairperson of the Commission on the situation in Somalia and renewal of AMISOM mandate;

Recalling its previous decisions and pronouncements on the situation in Somalia and AMISOM, particularly Communique [PSC/PR/COMM(CMXI)], adopted at is 911th meeting held on 24 February 2020; Communique [PSC/PR/COMM.1(CMI)] adopted at its 901st meeting held on 13 December 2019; Communiqué [PSC/PR/COMM.(DCCCLXV)] adopted at its 865th meeting held on 7 August 2019; and Communiqué [PSC/PR/COMM.1(DCCCXLVIII)] adopted at its 848th meeting held on 9 May 2019, as well as UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2472 (2019) of 31 May 2019.

Acting under Article 7 of its Protocol, the Peace and Security Council:

1. Welcomes the fourth Report of the Chairperson of the Commission submitted pursuant to paragraph 11 of the PSC Communiqué [PSC/PR/COMM.1(DCCCXLVIII)] adopted at its 848th meeting, held on 9 May 2019, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in which, among others, Council requested the Commission to work closely with the UN and to ensure timely quarterly reports to the PSC on the situation in Somalia including issues relating to AMISOM;

2. Commends all efforts deployed by the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS), the Federal Member States (FMS) of Somalia, as well as AMISOM towards the promotion of inclusive political participation and dialogue to further enhance national cohesion, and requests the AMISOM to continue its engagement with the FGS and all other relevant stakeholders, with a view to assisting Somalia in addressing the current challenges;

3. Encourages additional efforts in building greater coordination and cooperation between the FGS and FMS to promote collective governance and socio-economic development of Somalia;

4. Welcomes the progress made in Somalia’s preparation for elections scheduled for November 2020, including the establishment of a Joint Parliamentary Committee for the completion of the Electoral Law; following the National Elections Bill (NEB) signed into law on 21 February 2020; as well as the activities of the National Electoral Security Taskforce (NESTF); applauds the Joint Parliamentary Committee for drafting the work plan, electing key officials, and successfully organizing a retreat on elections with the National Independent Electoral Committee (NIEC) in April 2020, with a view to creating conducive conditions for the holding of regional consultations as soon as possible;

5. Expresses deep concern over the security threats, including increasing mortar shelling of AMISOM base camp, illicit proliferation and flow of arms, as well as Improvised Explosive Devises (IED) and its materials which are used more extensively by the Al Shabaab terrorist group and other armed opposition groups (AOG) operating in the country; in this regard, Council encourages AMISOM to continue providing support to the Somali National Forces in degrading the activities of Al Shabaab; commends the Republic of Uganda for its initiative to deploy helicopters for AMISOM, and calls for adequate force enablers and multipliers that the Mission desperately needs, in order to enable it to more effectively discharge its mandate and to consolidate peace in Somalia;

6. Condemns, in strongest terms possible, the continuous and indiscriminate attacks by Al-Shabaab against civilian population and facilities, as well as targeted assassinations of Government personnel and prominent politicians; expresses deep condolences to the families of those who lost their lives and wishes quick recovery to those injured during those cowardly attacks; pays tribute to the AMISOM Troop and Police Contributing Countries (T/PCCs), and their nationals, especially those that have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the promotion of peace, security, stability and reconciliation in Somalia;

7. Expresses concern over the security implications of AMISOM drawdown and stresses the imperative need for a halt in further reduction of AMISOM uniformed personnel, with regard to the planning for the safe holding of elections and the successful implementation of the Somali Transition Plan leading to 2021, with a view to preserving the gains made so far, and also taking into consideration the impacts of COVID-19 on the entire Mission;

8. Recalls UN Security Council Resolution 1863(2009) establishing a Trust Fund to provide support to AMISOM and calls for urgent contributions to address additional challenges, including COVID-19 and supporting and securing humanitarian activities in Somalia;

9. Urges the AU Commission to further strengthen its oversight over AMISOM and ensure Mission unified command and control between FHQs and Sector Units operational coordination among AMISOM contingents, strengthen command, control and accountability of the operationalization of the mission enabling units, including mission air assets, enabling the creation and operationalization of mobile military forces in the sectors, and promote coordinated operational decision making under the Force Commander, and ensure that all Mission force enablers and multipliers operate under the Force Commander.

10. Appeals to all relevant stakeholders to continue working together to expedite the deployment of the Ghana and Djibouti Formed Police Unit (FPU) and equipment, including utilization of air assets of other UN Missions in Africa, if such capabilities are not currently available within Somalia;

11. Expresses concern over the effects of the desert locust invasion, as well as the floods and the attendant humanitarian situation in Somalia which has displaced many people and in this context, appeals to all Member States and the international community to provide humanitarian assistance to the affected population, as well as for provision of security and rebuilding of infrastructure to facilitate humanitarian access and movement of goods and people;

12. Requests the AU Commission, through Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) to continue providing necessary support to the FGS in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic, with a view to ensuring preservation of the gains made in political and socio-economic sectors in the country, as well as in the preparation of the planned elections;

13. Calls for a comprehensive review of the Somali Transition Plan and its implementation modalities, led by the FGS, with full participation of the AU, UN, EU and key FGS bilateral partners by July 2020, in order to provide a solid basis for the reprioritization of critical elements in the Transition Plan leading to 2021, which would also inform AMISOM’s CONOPs review and guide the confirmation of Somali priority initiatives for post-2021, as well as support by the international community;

14. Also calls for enhanced coordination between FGS, AU, UN and other strategic partners in supporting the STP, including in the training and equipping of the SSF which are instrumental to achieving effective force generation to enable the SSF to gradually take over security responsibilities in Somalia. Council requests AMISOM, within its existing civilian capability and utilizing its Civilian Sector Teams, to assist the FGS and FMS, in collaboration with the UNSOM, to support the extension of state authority, including ensuring full compliance with international humanitarian law, human rights law and standards, as well as support to local governance, humanitarian efforts and stabilization processes in areas recovered from Al-Shabaab. Further requests AMISOM to continue facilitating peace initiatives in support of Somali efforts in building the capacity of traditional leaders in the mediation of local disputes;

15. Recalls communiques adopted at its 901st (paragraph 17) and 911th (paragraph 13) meeting and calls on the AU Commission, working closely with UNSG, and the Government of Somalia, to conduct, by 15 November 2020, an independent comprehensive assessment of the security environment giving due attention to broader and comprehensive stabilization and security requirements, with a view to presenting options for consideration to the PSC and UN Security Council on the role of the AU, UN and international partners in Somalia post-2021;

16. Decides to renew the mandate of AMISOM for 12 months, from 27 May 2020, in order for AMISOM to continue supporting the completion of Phase Two and implementation of Phase Three of the Somali Transition Plan and, in this regard, requests the Commission to review the AMISOM CONOPS, by September 2020, in order to align it with urgent priorities;

17. Also decides to adopt the Report of the Chairperson of the Commission on the situation in Somalia and requests the Chairperson of the Commission to transmit this Communiqué to the African Members of the UN Security Council (A3), and to the UN Secretary General for circulation to the members of the UN Security Council as working document, pursuant to paragraph 32 of UNSCR 2472 (2019); and

18. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Posted by SitroomCom

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