Adopted by the Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU) at its 1006TH meeting held on 6 July 2021 on the consideration of the G-5 Sahel mandate,

Peace and Security Council,

Noting the opening remarks by H.E. Ambassador Victor Adeleke, Permanent Representative of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Chairperson of the PSC for the month of July 2021 and the statement by H.E. Ambassador Bankole Adeoye, AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security; also noting the presentation made by General Oumarou Namata Gazama, the Force Commander of the G5 Sahel Joint Force, as well as statements by representatives of Ghana, as the current Chair of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), and the Members of the G5 Sahel, namely, Burkina Faso, Chad, Mauritania and Niger;

Mindful of the link between the security situation in Libya and the situation in Mali and the entire Sahel region;

Recalling Decision [Assembly/AU/Dec.792.(XXXIII)] on the situation in Libya and Sahel, adopted by the 33rd Ordinary session of the AU Assembly held from 9 to 10 February 2020, in Addis Ababa, and its previous decisions and pronouncements on the activities of the G5 Sahel Joint Force, in particular, Communique [PSC/PR/COMM.(CMXXXIX)] adopted at its 939th meeting held on 30 July 2020, as well as Communique [PSC/PR/1/COMM.(CMXX)], adopted at its 920th meeting held on 21 April 2020; and
Acting under Article 7 of its Protocol, the Peace and Security Council,

1. Expresses deep concern over the worsening security and humanitarian situations in the Sahel region, due to the increasing attacks by terrorists, criminal and armed groups operating in the region, as well as the resultant socio-economic challenges which are being compounded by the adverse effects of climate change and the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic;

2. Condemns in strongest terms the attacks by terrorist, criminal and armed groups against the States of the region and also against innocent population; and equally condemning violent extremism, transhumance activities, drugs and small arms trafficking, including transnational organized crimes, which all have had negative cumulative effects on governance, institutional capacity building and broader state building efforts across the Sahel region;

3. Commends the G5 Sahel Joint Force for its continued commitment to restore durable peace and security in the Sahel region in spite of the capacity challenges facing the Joint Force; commends in particular the troop contributing countries and pays tribute, to the men and women of the G5 Sahel Joint Force, who have paid the ultimate sacrifice and wishes speedy recovery to all those who are sustaining injuries in the efforts of promoting peace, security and stability in the Sahel;

4. Also commends the ECOWAS mediation Team led by H.E President Goodluck Jonathan for his unwavering support to the Malian stakeholders as they make efforts towards the restitution of constitutional order in the country and urges the Malian stakeholders to prioritize national interests and exert efforts towards the successful implementation of the Transition Charter and the Peace and Reconciliation Agreement, emanated from the Algiers process (2015), including the organization of credible, transparent democratic elections within the stipulated time frame;

5. Further commends the international partners for their continued financial and technical support to the efforts of the G5 Sahel Joint Force, as well as for their support to the efforts of the governments of the region to alleviate the suffering of the affected populations of the region;

6. Emphasizes the need for enhanced coordination and complementarity of efforts between and among all forces deployed in the region, namely, the G5 Sahel Joint Force, Operation Barkhane, United Nations Multidimensional Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), TAKOUBA and the Multi-National Joint Task Force against the Boko Haram, with a view to achieve the objective in degrading and eliminating terrorist groups, while avoiding duplication of efforts and wastage of scarce resources;

7. Underscores the need for the G-5 Sahel Joint Force to continue enhancing its compliance and accountability to International Humanitarian Law (IHL), International Human Rights Law (IHRL) as well as Conduct and Discipline stands; in this regard requests the AU Commission to provide support to the G-5 Sahel Joint Force in ensuring compliance and accountability;

8. Underlines the urgent need to redouble efforts in mobilizing predictable and sustainable funding and the required material resources to enable the G-5 Sahel Force to more effectively discharge its mandate; in this context, encourages the G5 Sahel countries to continue to cooperate with the Government of the People’s Republic of China for the swift delivery of the equipment pursuant to the Agreement signed on 8 May 2020;

9. Reiterates the importance of a comprehensive and multidimensional approach in addressing the fundamental root causes of the security challenges facing the countries of the Sahel region, including a comprehensive approach to counter terrorism and violent extremism; and requests the Chairperson of the Commission to dispatch a joint technical assessment mission to the Sahel region, to ascertain the political, security and humanitarian situation on ground, as well as the possible impact and implications of the exit of the Operation Barkhane Force or its downsizing;

10. Emphasizes the need for improved working methods between the AU Commission and the G5 Sahel Executive Secretariat, among others, by establishing a G5 Sahel Strategic Support Cell within the AU Commission to play the critical role of cross-communication, information sharing, effective management of administrative, logistics and provision of support to the G5 Sahel Force;

11. Requests the Chairperson of the Commission to continue consultations with the concerned stakeholders on the deployment of the 3000 troops in the Sahel region in implementation of Decision [Assembly/AU/Dec.792 (XXXIII)] on the situation in Libya and Sahel adopted by the 33rd Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly held from 9 to 10 February 2020, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and brief back the PSC on the outcomes of the consultations;

12. Also requests the Chairperson of the AU Commission, working in close coordination with the G5 Sahel Secretariat and countries of the region, to expedite the finalization of the AU Sahel Stabilization Strategy, among others, by harmonizing the outstanding activities on the ground and avoiding duplications, while focusing on projects where resources are needed most;

13. Decides to renew the mandate of the G-5 Sahel Joint Force for another one year from 13 July 2021; and

14. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Posted by SitroomCom
Last updated by Lulit Kebede

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