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COMMUNIQUE

 

Adopted by the Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU) at its 1055th   meeting held at Ministerial level on 14 December 2021 on the theme: Interdependence between Peace, Security and Development:

The Peace and Security Council,

Recalling its previous decisions and pronouncements on the interdependence between peace, security and development, and related themes, particularly, Communiques [PSC/PR/COMM. (CMLXXV)] adopted at its 975th meeting held on 27 January 2021 and [PSC/PR/COMM. 1 (DCCCLXXXIII)] adopted at its 883rd meeting held at the Ministerial level, in New York, on 27 September 2019;

Also recalling the OAU/AU 50th Anniversary Solemn Declaration, in which the Heads of State and Government pledged their determination to achieve the goal of a conflict-free Continent, to make peace a reality for all of Africa’s citizens and not to bequeath the burden of conflicts to future generations;

Reaffirming its commitment to Agenda 2063, particularly its flagship project of Silencing the Guns by 2030, aimed at achieving a conflict-free Africa, ridding the Continent of wars, violent conflicts and humanitarian disasters in order to attain peace and create conducive conditions for development across the Continent;

Faithful to the provisions of the Protocol Relating to the Establishment of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union, particularly Articles 3 and 4 stipulating, respectively, the objectives and the guiding principles of the PSC;

Expressing concern over the continued prevalence of violent conflict and the myriad threats to peace and security in Africa which are contributing to the socio-economic decline in the Continent;

Acknowledging the devastating socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Member States, particularly those already affected by, among others, travel bans, the scourge of armed conflict, terrorism and violent extremism, economic sanctions, and climate change;

Cognizant of the fact that full operationalization of the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) and the African Governance Architecture (AGA) are imperative for the prevention of conflicts and promotion of sustainable peace and stability, collective security, good governance, and socio-economic development in the Continent;

Noting the opening remarks by H.E. Demeke Mekonnen, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia as Chairperson of the AU PSC for December 2021, and the statement by H.E. Ambassador Bankole Adeoye, AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security; and also noting the statements by H.E. Ms. Hannah Tetteh, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Office to the African Union, as well as by the representatives of the AU Development Agency-NEPAD and the African Development Bank (ADB);

Reaffirming its solidarity with the Governments and people of Member States adversely affected by conflict and other threats to peace, security and development; expressing its unwavering commitment to silencing the guns in Africa by 2030, to completing the process of decolonization on the Continent, to eradicating terrorism and related scourges, to rejecting foreign interventions in the internal affairs of African States and emphasizing the imperative of respecting their respective sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity;

Reaffirming the inalienable right of all peoples to security, well-being, development and sovereignty over their natural resources, including the people of Non-Self-governing Territories under colonial occupation; and recalling the responsibility of the international community in ensuring the protection of their fundamental rights, including the imprescriptible right to self-determination, in accordance with the United Nations Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights.

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

1. Underscores the need for an integrated, inclusive and comprehensive approach in addressing the peace, security and development nexus in order to mitigate against the perpetuation of violent conflicts and the resulting societal fragmentation, destruction of vital infrastructure, state collapse and socio-economic decline;

2. Emphasizes the need for strengthening early warning mechanisms to ensure timely response and deployment of preventive diplomacy instruments by the Council to assist affected Member States in effectively addressing potential conflicts before their escalation into full-blown violence;

3. Reiterates its call to all Member States to redouble their efforts towards the implementation of the AU Master Roadmap for Silencing the Guns and its Monitoring and Evaluation Framework to ensure the nexus between peace, security and development is realized;

4. Underlines the imperative of sustained efforts towards comprehensively addressing the fundamental root causes of conflict in order to end current conflicts, avoid relapses and create conducive conditions for durable peace, security and sustainable development;

5. Reiterates its call for redoubled efforts in mobilizing the required resources for the AU Post-Conflict Reconstruction and Development (PCRD) and the AU PCRD centre in Cairo, Egypt, including predictable and sustainable funding to ensure effective AU support to Member States in political transition and post-conflict situations, based on their specific needs and priorities;

6. Highlights the critical role of the Regional Economic Communities and Regional Mechanisms for conflict prevention, management and resolution (RECs/RMs) in responding to conflicts in their geographical areas of jurisdiction, as well as in achieving regional economic integration and development objectives in line with the principles of subsidiarity, complementarity and comparative advantages;

7. Underscores the potential creativity, energy and innovative capabilities of the African youth, especially the importance of these to the development transformation of the Continent; and notes, in this regard, the need to harness this potential of the African youth through meaningful engagement and development initiatives;

8. Emphasizes the need to strengthen institutions, deepen democracy, and institute efficient political and economic management of the state in order to realize the aspirations of Agenda 2063 and improve the living standards of African people, and in this regard, stresses the importance of concerted efforts in creating inclusive societies and ensuring participation of women and youth in decision-making processes related to peace, security and development;

9. Underscores the importance of reviewing existing policy instruments in order to ensure that they effectively respond to the myriad threats to peace, security and development in the Continent, and the importance for Member States to adhere to democratic ideals, including the rule of law;

10. Underlines the need for Member States to enshrine values that emphasize reconciliation and justice in order to fight impunity and promote mutual respect and tolerance of diversity, and in this regard, underscores the need for redoubling efforts towards the promotion of fairness, impartiality, accountability and pluralism;

11. Encourages Member States to create conducive conditions for informal economies as one of the means to achieve economic growth and sustainable development, and also to create appropriate spaces for collaboration between the public and political parties, the private sector and civil society, in mapping out national development priorities and their implementation;

12. Reiterate its call to the international community for debt relief, restructuring and cancellation in favour of Member States which are affected by the scourges of conflict, terrorism and violent extremism, and other threats to peace, security and development, as well as losses of revenues incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic, to ensure that these Member States increase their liquidity and respond to socio-economic development imperatives and pave the way for economic recovery;

13. Underlines the importance of strengthening coordination amongst all relevant stakeholders, including Member States, RECs/RMs and the AU Commission, and capacitating these stakeholders in order for them to effectively lend themselves to the demanding tasks of attaining durable peace, security and sustainable development; and stresses the need to share experiences and lessons from past interventions at the national, regional and Continental levels;

14. Emphasizes the need to also capacitate existing ad-hoc regional arrangements and mechanisms in their endeavours to address security challenges, including terrorism, transnational organized crime, trafficking, and illegal exploitation and trade of natural resources; and in this regard, reaffirms its call for the full operationalization of the African Standby Force (ASF) to enable rapid deployment in response to emerging security threats and conflicts;

15. Encourages Member States, working in close collaboration with RECs/RMs, to redouble efforts towards curtailing the circulation and proliferation of illicit small and light weapons, and in this regard, stresses the importance of continued collaboration between Member States, RECs/RMs and all relevant stakeholders on efforts aimed at securing shared borders;

16. Calls for continued collaboration between the AU Commission, AUDA-NEPAD, African Development Bank and the broader international community on strategies to overcome socio-economic challenges and address human security;

17. Welcomes the convening of the Tana Forum High Level Forum on Security in Africa taking place in Ethiopia and the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development in Egypt and looks forward to the holding of the Tana Forum and the third edition of Aswan Forum in 2022;

18. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Posted by PSC Secretariat

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