Adopted by the Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU) at its 1068th meeting held on 8 March, 2022, on the reconfiguration of the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM),

The Peace and Security Council,

Recalling its previous decisions on the situation in Somalia and on AMISOM post-2021, particularly Communiques [PSC/PR/COMM.1053(2021)], adopted at its 1053rd meeting held on 7 December 2021; [PSC/PR/COMM.1042 (2021)] adopted at its 1042nd meeting held on 28 October 2021 ; [PSC/PR/COMM. 1037(2021)] adopted at its 1037th meeting held on 7th October 2021, and Communique [PSC/PR/COMM.2 (CMXCIV)], adopted at its 994th meeting held on 11 May 2021, as well as the Summary Records of its meetings held on 30 August 2021 and on 30 July 2021, as well as United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2568 (2021);

Noting the opening remarks made by the Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Lesotho to the AU, and Chairperson of the PSC for the month of March 2022, H.E. Professor Mafa Sejanamane, and the statement by the AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, H.E. Bankole Adeoye; also noting the briefing by the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the AU Commission for Somalia and Head of AMISOM, H.E. Francisco Caetano Madeira, as well as the statements delivered by the Permanent Representative of Somalia to the African Union, H.E. Abdullahi Ahmed Jama, the Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations (UN) to the African Union and Head of the UN Office to the African Union, H.E. Hannah Tetteh and the European Union (EU) Ambassador to the AU, H.E. Birgitte Markussen;

Determined to defeat Al Shabaab and other terrorist groups, restore lasting peace, security and stability, as well as political normalcy in Somalia; and

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

1. Re-affirms its unwavering commitment to continue to respect the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political unity of the Federal Republic of Somalia and to promote national ownership of the transition process by the Government of Somalia;

2. Pays tribute to AMISOM and its personnel for the achievements registered over the past fifteen years, including its role in the fight against terrorism, liberating territory from Al Shabaab and in creating an enabling environment for critical political and state-building processes to take place; and expresses condolences to the families of all deceased AMISOM personnel and wishes speedy recovery to all those nursing injuries from attacks from Al Shabaab and other terrorist groups in Somalia;

3. Also pays special tribute to the AMISOM Troop and Police Contributing Countries (T/PCCs) for their continued commitment and sacrifices made since 2007 when the Mission was deployed in Somalia; namely, Republic of Benin, Republic of Burundi, Republic of Djibouti, Republic of Chad, Arab Republic of Egypt, Kingdom of Eswatini, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Republic of Ghana, Republic of Kenya, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Republic of Sierra Leone, Republic of Uganda, Republic of Zambia and Republic of Zimbabwe;

4. Commends and welcomes the steady progress made recently and the increased momentum towards the finalization of the elections process, and while urging the Federal Government of Somalia to expedite its completion in a transparent and inclusive manner and in the shortest possible time;

5. Acknowledges the changing nature of the security threat in Somalia in the past fifteen years, as Al Shabaab has evolved from being primarily a military threat, to a more asymmetric and hybrid one, using insurgency tactics of a terrorist-cum-organized criminal group, which requires as a response, the reconfiguration of AMISOM to better adapt to the changing threat;

6. In this context, decides to authorize the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia, (ATMIS), to replace AMISOM with effect from 1 April 2022;

7. Underlines that ATMIS shall entail a reconfiguration of AMISOM, and, in this regard, shall be guided by the Somali Transition Plan (STP), which outlines the process towards the gradual handover of security responsibilities to the Somali Security Forces by December 2024;

8. Stresses that the challenges facing Somalia requires a multifaceted and comprehensive approach to address the security, political and governance issues at the heart of the Somali crisis, and in this respect, ATMIS will be a full-fledged multidimensional mission to support the development of able, affordable and accountable Somali security forces and state institutions;

9. Decides that ATMIS shall have the following mandate:

a. degrade Al Shabaab and other terrorist groups;
b. provide security to population centres and open the main supply routes;
c. develop the capacity of the Somali Security Forces to enable them to take over security responsibilities by the end of the transition period, that is, December 2024;
d. support peace and reconciliation efforts of the FGS; and
e. help develop the capacity of the security, justice and local authority institutions of the Federal Government of Somalia and Federal Member States;

10. Endorses the AU-FGS Joint Concept of Operations, which identifies a four-phased approach to the transfer of security responsibilities to Somali Security Forces as follows:

a) Phase I –Reconfiguration;
b) Phase II – Joint shaping and clearing operations and the handing over of some Forward Operating Bases to Somali Security Forces;
c) Phase III – Decisive operations and handing over of the remaining Forward Operating Bases; and
d) Phase IV – withdrawal and liquidation of ATMIS;

11. Also endorses the ATMIS strategic objectives, as defined in the Concept of Operations (CONOPS), as follows:

a. conduct jointly planned and targeted operations with Somali Security Forces to degrade Al Shabaab and other terrorist groups;
b. jointly hold key population centres and provide protection for local communities, UN personnel and installations, secure main supply routes, and coordinate stabilization, reconciliation and state-building activities with Somali Security Forces and government authorities;
c. assist the FGS and the FMS in the delivery of stabilization packages as well as in facilitating humanitarian assistance to those in need;
d. support capacity-building for Somali Security Forces, prioritizing force generation, operational competence, and logistical support capabilities;
e. conduct all operations in full recognition of international obligations to International Human Rights Law, International Humanitarian Law, the AU Compliance and Accountability Framework for Peace Support Operations, and UN Human Rights Due Diligence Policy. In this context, ATMIS should strengthen its Civilian Casualty Tracking, Analysis and Response Cell (CCTARC) and reporting mechanism;
f. promote greater gender parity and increased numbers of women at all levels of the mission, including leadership positions.
g. undertake peacebuilding, post conflict reconstruction and development, and stabilization measures using the good offices of the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the AU Commission and Head of ATMIS, including the African Union Post Conflict Reconstruction and Development Center in Cairo, Egypt;

12. Agrees that, in order to undertake these key strategic tasks, AMISOM shall be reconfigured into ATMIS to:

a. become more agile, more mobile, more flexible, and better able to respond to the emerging threats by enhancing its force protection and posture as well as by creating mobile and quick reaction forces;
b. realign its mission components and deployments across ATMIS sectors to better execute its mandated tasks;
c. adjust its equipment to match its operational tasks;
d. adjust its logistical support to meet the requirements of ATMIS outlined in the CONOPs; and
e. enhance its support to the Somali Security Forces to increase its capacity to take over security responsibilities;

13. Further decides that ATMIS shall comprise military, police and civilian components, to facilitate implementation of its mandate in support of the STP, and that ATMIS shall be constituted by the current AMISOM civilian personnel and T/PCCs, as well as other interested AU Member States ; also decides that the mission shall be headed by a Special Representative of the Chairperson of the Commission for Somalia, to whom each component shall report separately;

14. Also decides that the Force Commander shall come from the largest Troop Contributing Country and he/she should be empowered with clear command and control competencies over all the forces of the mission, and, in this regard, stresses the importance that all troops strictly adhere to the command and control structure of ATMIS, as well as to comply with International Humanitarian Law, International Human Rights Law, the AU Compliance and Accountability Framework for Peace Support Operations, and the UN Human Rights Due Diligence Policy for the prevention and response to allegations and/or violations, as well as all benchmarks for troop effectiveness;

15. Underscores the need for the Federal Government of Somalia to fully and effectively support the implementation of the ATMIS mandate in particular with regard to force generation and cooperation with ATMIS in supporting capacity enhancement as well as governance and institution building processes;

16. Underlines that the success of the mission will, to a large extent, depend on the appropriate staffing of all components and, in this regard, requests the Chairperson of the Commission to expedite the necessary recruitment processes, to ensure that the full staff complement of ATMIS is completed by the end of Phase I of the transition, that is by 31 December 2022;

17. Requests the Commission, working closely with AMISOM, to establish an Integrated Task Force, including T/PCCs, to facilitate the reconfiguration of AMISOM to ATMIS during Phase 1 of the transition;

18. Emphasizes that force generation by the Somali Security Forces will be key to the success of the mandate of ATMIS and to this end, urges the FGS to meet its commitments towards achieving the benchmarks and timelines as indicated in the CONOPs, and to ensure that it is able to generate the forces as appropriate for assuming incremental responsibility of security, including, inter alia, the generation of holding forces to take over Forward Operating Bases, alongside offensive forces tasked with clearing operations jointly with ATMIS;

19. Stresses the need for building state institutions, particularly those related to countering terrorism including cutting sources of funding of terrorist groups, countering extremist ideologies and fighting organized crime;

20. Recognizes that building strong and resilient national state institutions is key to achieving sustainable peace, security and stability, and in this regard; highlights the critical role of peacebuilding and post-conflict reconstruction and development programs and while re-emphasizing the importance of streamlining, as appropriate, such programs across relevant AU engagements in Somalia, including through the AU-PCRD Center in Cairo, Egypt;

21. Endorses the AU-UN Joint Proposal on the Strategic Objectives, Size and Composition of a Reconfigured AU Mission in Somalia and takes note of the UN Logistics Support Plan submitted for the provision of logistical support to ATMIS and SSF, and therefore requests the UN, in consultation with the Commission and the FGS, to realign it fully with the ATMIS CONOPs; underscores, in this context, that, as ATMIS reconfigures, there will be need for a corresponding reconfiguration of the UN Support Office to Somalia (UNSOS), in a manner that takes into account the unique requirements for provision of effective integrated logistical support to ATMIS and SSF, which puts in place mechanisms to ensure a speedy response to the logistical requirements for high-tempo offensive operations;

22. Commends the African Union Commission, the United Nations Secretariat, the European Union Commission and the Federal Government of Somalia for the positive engagements and consultations in preparation of the AU-UN Joint Proposal on the Strategic Objectives, Size and Composition of a Reconfigured AU Mission in Somalia;

23. Decides, in line with the CONOPs that, during Phase I, ATMIS military component shall maintain the current AMISOM size of 18,586 troops, and that the first drawdown of 2000 troops will take place by 31 December 2022, following the reconfiguration of the mission to ensure greater agility, mobility and a more offensive force posture; in the same context, Council also decides that the police component shall maintain its current strength of 1040 until the drawdown and liquidation of the mission by 31 December 2024;

24. calls upon the UN to continue providing logistical support to the current authorised 70 civilian personnel up to 31 December 2022 and requests the UN to increase logistics support for an additional 15 civilian personnel at the end of Phase I, - starting from 1 January 2023, in order to facilitate enhanced implementation of the STP from Phase II of the transition process, including focusing on stabilization and post-conflict reconstruction and development; reconciliation; election processes; assisting the FGS to attain its objective of one person one vote by the next elections to be organized in 2025/26; preventing and combating violent extremism; as well as humanitarian liaison and facilitation;

25. Underscores the critical importance of additional force multipliers and force enablers for the reconfiguration and transfer of security responsibilities to the SSF and, in this regard, requests ATMIS and the Commission, working in collaboration with the FGS and the UN, to complete the mission equipment review, as soon as possible, to finalise the ATMIS Status of Unit Requirements (SUR) and identify the necessary enablers, multipliers, and needed equipment, and engage with countries that can provide these specialized capabilities, in order to effectively address the operational and strategic needs on the ground;

26. Also underscores that, as ATMIS commences operations, there will be need for a corresponding reconfiguration of UNSOS, in a manner that takes into account the unique requirements for provision of logistical support to ATMIS, which puts in place mechanisms to ensure a speedy response to the logistical requirements for high-tempo offensive operations, and stresses the need for greater transparency and accountability with regard to the budget and funds allocated to ATMIS in the UNSOS support package;

27. Emphasizes the critical role of Somalia’s international partners in ensuring successful transition of security responsibility to Somalia by supporting the Somali Security Forces in the process of force generation, including provision of required training equipment and logistical support; and in this regard, requests ATMIS, the FGS and UNSOS to put in place a coordination mechanism to assist in expediting mobilization and utilization of the additional forces to be generated as per the SSF force generation plan and targets outlined in the CONOPs;

28. Re-affirms the critical importance of sustainable and predictable financing, at adequate levels and for the full duration of the mission from 1 April, 2022 up to 31 December, 2024, to the overall success of ATMIS in attaining its strategic objectives and in this regard, appeals to the UN, European Union and other partners to establish a financial support package, including through UN assessed contributions, taking into consideration the primary responsibility of the UN Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security;

29. Welcomes the outcomes of the Cairo Retreat on Post-2021 arrangements in Somalia held in January 2022, organized by the Cairo International Center for Conflict Resolution, Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding, which provided a platform for technical discussions on the future AU Mission in Somalia;

30. Further requests the Chairperson of the Commission to submit quarterly reports to Council on the implementation of ATMIS mandate, including the report of the assessment to be facilitated by the Quartet (AU-FGS-UN-EU) Technical Teams every six months, which should include the steps taken by the FGS and international partners in implementing the CONOPs;

31. Requests the Chairperson of the Commission to urgently transmit this communique to the United Nations Security Council for authorization of the ATMIS and also to the European Union for required support to ATMIS;

32. Underscores the need to maintain AMISOM’s legacy and requests the Commission to undertake a study on lessons learned on AMISOM and its activities over the past 15 years to identify and document good practices that can be utilized by AU Peace Support Operations, including ATMIS, in the implementation of their respective mandates; and

33. Decides to remain seized of the matter.

Posted by SitroomCom
Last updated by Abraham Kebede

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