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Dear readers,

It is my pleasure to share with you this sixth edition of the AU Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) newsletter.

In this issue you will find mention of other peace and security initiatives that are intrinsically intertwined with the implementation of DDR activities. We see the role that DDR plays in galvanizing efforts in PSO’s like the Multinational Joint Task Force against Boko Haram (MNJTF), the AU-led Regional Cooperation Initiative for the Elimination of the LRA (RCI-LRA), and in the control of small arms and light weapons circulation as countries transition from conflict to post conflict settings.

This issue highlights how other areas of focus impact on the successful implementation of DDR. Indeed in recent years we see how a wide range of activities fall under the heading of DDR, as the global face of conflict changes. In this evolving stabilization context, we see a lack of classic pre-conditions for DDR, including the absence of signed peace agreements. Previously clear, traditional military structures have also now expanded to include members of informal armed groups, gangs and militias, and a proliferation of small arms which may require disarmament programs covering entire community.

DDR now incorporates programmes involving weapons reduction, community violence reduction, and multi-dimensional reintegration that focuses not only on the economic aspects of reintegration, but which also places strong emphasis on social reintegration and the necessary supporting structures, including psychosocial support.

By looking at other activities being undertaken within the Peace and Security Department that are linked to DDR, we see linkages that support our broader efforts, giving you, our readers, insight into this ever expanding area of engagement. As we try to keep abreast with emerging trends, we continue to employ every effort to ensure that Member States and the RECs/RMs receive as much support from the AU and partners, as we can offer.

 I sincerely hope that you, our readers, will enjoy this sixth edition and that you find the information captured both insightful and informative.

 Best Wishes,

 H.E. Amb. Smail Chergui

Commissioner, Peace and Security,

African Union Commission 

Posted by Kodjo Tchioffo

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