The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 669th meeting held on 21 March 2017, received a briefing on Early Warning and the State of Peace and Security in Africa and adopted the following decision:



1.    Takes note of the presentations made by the AU Commission and by Mr. Vasu Gounden, the Executive Director of the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD), which is based in Durban, South Africa. Council also takes note of the statement made by the representative of Ethiopia in its capacity as an African Member of the United Nations Security Council (A3);

2.    Recalls all its previous communiques and press statements on early warning and conflict prevention in Africa;

3.    Expresses deep concern over the persistent occurrence of violent conflicts and crises situations, as well as relapses back to the cycle of violent conflicts in parts of the continent, which continue to undermine  Africa’s efforts to provide well for its people using the  abundant natural resources available;

4.    Also expresses concern over the continued cases of denials to objective/credible early warning signals of looming crises, thereby undermining the conflict prevention capacity of Council, which, in effect often leads to full blown violent conflicts with all attendant political, economic, humanitarian and environmental consequences. In this context, and taking  into consideration the efforts called for in Agenda 2063, including those for Silencing the Guns in Africa by  the year 2020, Council urges all AU Member States  to extend necessary support to  the efforts of Council to prevent the outbreak of violent conflicts and crises;

5.    Calls  for promotion of synergies between the AU Commission and other African institutions, including think tanks and research institutions, whose activities focus on conflict prevention;

6.    Deplores the fact that Africa has not taken necessary measures, robust enough to tackle the lopsided pattern of socio-economic development inherited from the colonial systems, which continue to trigger and fuel tensions, instability and insecurity within communities. In this context, Council calls for sustained action to address the root causes of violent conflicts, including inequality, exclusion and marginalization, through measures that boost job creation and balanced income distribution with a view to eradicating abject poverty across the continent;

7.    Recognizes the growing mismatch between the rates of population growth, urbanization and economic development and transformation in Africa, which may trigger and further exacerbate tensions. In this respect, Council urges all Member States to adapt their economies to the contemporary trends with a view to preventing violent conflicts and crisis situations in the continent;

8.    Acknowledges the significant political, peace and security challenges facing the democratic Republic of Congo, and need to enhance the contributions of all partners in assisting the Congolese authorities in addressing these challenges. Council underscores the critical role on the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) in this regard, and stresses the need to ensure that the Mission remains well mandated and resourced to fulfil its task. Council re-affirms Africa’s commitment, as clearly stated by the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government in the Kigali Decision Assembly/AU/Dec.605 (XXVII), adopted at the 27th Ordinary Session of the Assembly, held in Kigali, Rwanda, in July 2016, to ensure that 25% of peacekeeping funding shall be, by 2020, be mobilized from within the continent, while 75% is requested to come from the UN assessed contributions. Council also re-affirms the determination of the AU and its Regional Economic Communities/ Regional Mechanisms for Conflict Prevention, Management and Resolution to allocate more resources to prevention as decided by the Assembly in relation to the Peace Fund, in particular, through the cluster relating to preventive diplomacy and mediation. In this regard, Council looks forward to the UN for continued and intensified efforts aimed at providing necessary resources and logistical support to AU-led peace efforts, commensurate with the challenges at hand, within the framework of the AU-UN partnership in the area of peace and security;  

9.    Reiterates its call for necessary measures being taken by all member States, and the larger international community , to fully address both root causes and adverse effects of climate change;
10.    Stresses the role of local actors, particularly researchers, community-based organizations and academics in providing inputs into early warning as needed for conflict prevention. In this context, Council call on the AU Commission and the RECs/RMs to take full advantage of this resource;

11.    Decides to review the approach, structure and focus of the Report of the PSC on its Activities and the State of Peace and Security in Africa, which is submitted to each AU Summit, during the upcoming Retreat of Council to be held in Kigali, Rwanda, in early May 2017;

12.    Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Posted by Limi Mohammed
Last updated by Abraham Kebede

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