TheNigerianVoice Online Radio Center

Communique of the 339th meeting of the Peace and Security Council on Mali

By African Union Commission (AUC)
Click for Full Image Size
Listen to article

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, October 25, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 339th meeting, at ministerial level, held on 24 October 2012, adopted the following decision on the situation in Mali:

Council,

1. Takes note of the Report of the Chairperson of the Commission on the Strategic Concept for the Resolution of the Crises in Mali and other Related Aspects [PSC/MIN/3(CCCXXXIX)].Council also takes note of the statement made by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Mali, as well as of the statements made by the representatives of Côte d'Ivoire, current Chair of the Economic Community of the West African States (ECOWAS), and Burkina Faso, in her capacity as ECOWAS Mediator in the crisis in Mali, the President of the ECOWAS Commission and the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for West Africa;

2. Recalls its previous communiqués on the situation in Mali, in particular the communiqués of its 323rd and 327th meetings held on 12 June and 14 July 2012, respectively [PSC/PR/COMM. (CCCXXIII) and PSC/AHG/COMM/1.(CCCXXVII)], and reaffirms its full support for the decisions taken by ECOWAS in response to the crises in Mali;

3. Reaffirms its unwavering commitment to the national unity and territorial integrity of Mali, as well as its total rejection of terrorism and armed rebellion as means of pressing political demands. Council underlines the determination of the AU to ensure strict compliance with these fundamental principles;

4. Expresses its appreciation to Presidents Yayi Boni of Benin, Chairman of the Union, Alassane Dramane Ouattara of Côte d'Ivoire, Chairman of ECOWAS, Blaise Compaoré of Burkina Faso, ECOWAS Mediator, Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria, Associate Mediator, the other regional leaders, and the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Kadré Désiré Ouédraogo, for their continued commitment and tireless efforts aimed at assisting Mali to overcome the challenges facing it. Council also pays tribute to the core countries for their contribution and steadfastness in the fight against terrorism and transnational organized crime;

5. Welcomes the adoption by the UN Security Council, on 12 October 2012, of resolution 2071 (2012), as well as support being extended to the efforts by the region and Africa as a whole, in order to seek an early solution to the crises in Mali Council also welcomes the appointment of a Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for the Sahel, in order to enhance the ongoing efforts on the ground by the United Nations, notably through the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for West Africa. Furthermore, Council thanks the other AU partners, including the European Union (EU) and its Member States, the United States and other international actors for their commitment;

6. Commends the authorities and other political actors in Mali for the significant progress made in resolving the institutional crisis provoked by the coup d'état of 22 March 2012, including the formation of the Government of National Unity on 20 August 2012. In this context, and bearing in mind paragraph 10 of communiqué PSC/AHG/COMM/1.(CCCXXVII), Council decides to lift the suspension of Mali's participation in the activities of the AU, as contained in paragraph 9 of communiqué PSC/PR/COMM(CCCXV) of its 315th meeting held on 23 March 2012;

7. Welcomes the Conclusions of the meeting of the Support and Follow-up Group held in Bamako, on 19 October 2012, which welcomed the Strategic Concept for the Resolution of the Crises in Mali. Council decides to adopt the Strategic Concept, which constitutes an important step towards greater coordination between the Malian stakeholders and the international actors and a holistic approach to the crises in Mali, through concrete measures with respect to the transition and governance in Mali, the restoration of state authority in the north, the reform of the security sector, elections, stabilization and post-conflict peace building, the fight against terrorism and transnational organized crime, the challenges facing the Sahel-Saharan region and humanitarian assistance, as well as coordination and follow-up. Council underlines that the Concept is intended to help structure international action to resolve the crises in Mali. In this regard, Council requests the Chairperson of the Commission, pending the transmission of the Concept of Operations referred to in paragraph 9 below, to submit the Strategic Concept to the UN Security Council to seek the latter's total support for its effective implementation;

8. Requests the Malian authorities, prior to the submission by the UN Secretary-General of the report requested by the UN Security Council in paragraph 7 of resolution 2071 (2012), to take the following steps, in order to strengthen efforts aimed at resolving the crises in Mali:

(i) Enhance coherence among the transitional institutions in order to facilitate the implementation of the two main transitional tasks, namely the restoration of State authority over the northern part of the country and the organization of free, fair and transparent elections in the first quarter of 2013;

(ii) Elaborate as a matter of priority, in consultation with ECOWAS and the AU and the support of the United Nations and other international partners, through broad-based national consultations, a detailed roadmap, with concrete steps and timelines, on the implementation of the two main transitional tasks, in accordance with Security Council resolutions 2056 (2012) and 2071 (2012);

(iii) Establish, as soon as possible, the envisioned national structure that will be in charge of conducting negotiations with Malian armed groups in the north that are willing to engage in dialogue to find a political solution to the crisis, on the basis of strict respect for the national unity and territorial integrity of Mali, rejection of terrorism and transnational organized crime, as well as armed rebellion, it being understood that negotiations cannot be open-ended. In this respect, Council underlines the importance of the involvement of all the components of the populations in the north, as well as of the rebel groups that disassociate themselves from terrorism and transnational organized crime and renounce any separatist agenda;

(iv) Initiate concrete steps towards combatting impunity, ensuring and scrupulous respect for human rights, as well as full and effective civilian control of the military, consistent with relevant ECOWAS, AU, UN decisions and resolutions;

(v) take immediate steps to facilitate the efforts of the international community to respond to the request regarding the deployment of an international military force;

9. Welcomes the ongoing efforts for the rapid finalization of the joint planning for the deployment of an African-led international force in Mali to respond to the request of the Malian authorities to regain control of the occupied territories in the north of the country, dismantle terrorist and criminal networks and ensure the full restoration of State authority throughout the national territory. In this regard, Council welcomes the planning conference scheduled to take place in Bamako from 30 October to 4 November 2012, with the participation of Mali, ECOWAS, the core countries, the AU, the EU and the UN, as well as other international partners, to harmonize approaches and finalize the Concept of Operations for the planned deployment in Mali, for transmission, no later than 15 November 2012, to the UN Secretary-General;

10. Stresses that the Concept of Operations should take into account the contributions that could be made, in line with the Protocol Relating to the Establishment of the Peace and Security Council and in accordance with relevant decisions of Council and the Assembly of the Union, by other African countries, including Mali's neighbors, in terms of intelligence, logistics and troops, and aim at strengthening the operational capacity of the Malian defense and security forces, to enable them play a leading role in the reconquest of the north and the execution of other related tasks;

11. Looks forward to the report of the Secretary-General of the United Nations pursuant to paragraph 7 of resolution 2071 (2012), and urges the Security Council to adopt, in due course, a resolution authorizing the deployment of the envisaged African-led international force in accordance with the request of the Malian authorities ;

12. Urges AU Member States and the international community as a whole, including regional and international organizations, to make available to the Malian defense and security forces the required financial, logistical and capacity building support, as requested by resolution 2071 (2012). In this regard, Council requests the Chairperson of the Commission, in consultation with ECOWAS, to urgently take the necessary steps to mobilize support from within the continent, in accordance with resolution 2071 (2012), the AU Constitutive Act and the relevant provisions of the Protocol Relating to the Establishment of the Peace and Security Council, including through the early convening of a resource mobilization conference;

13. Requests the Chairperson of the Commission, in collaboration with ECOWAS, the core countries, other African countries and international partners, to establish, within a period of one month from the date of adoption of this decision, a list of terrorist groups and criminal networks active in northern Mali and of their leaders, for the immediate imposition of sanctions. Council reiterates its determination to impose sanctions against Malian rebel groups that do not unequivocally dissociate themselves from terrorist and criminal networks and/or refuse to engage in a negotiation process to find a solution to the crisis on the basis of the above-mentioned principles, and in this regard notes the expressed readiness of the Security Council to adopt targeted sanctions;


14. Encourages the core countries to intensify their efforts to combat terrorist and criminal networks, in particular through the Fusion and Liaison Unit (UFL) and the Joint Operational Command (CEMOC), urges closer coordination between them and the other neighbors of Mali, and requests the Commission to take all necessary steps to this end;

15. Calls for a greater regional and international support to cope with the immediate humanitarian needs in northern Mali and in the neighboring countries hosting Malian refugees;

16. Welcomes the timely decision of the Chairperson of the Commission to appoint a High-Representative for Mali and the Sahel, and encourages her to accelerate the opening of an AU Office in Mali to strengthen AU's contribution to the ongoing efforts and ensure more effective coordination with ECOWAS and the countries of the region, as well as with the international partners;

17. Underlines the urgent need for all international actors to closely coordinate their efforts to address the multifaceted challenges facing the Sahelo-Saharan region, taking into account, in this regard, the important role of the UN Special Envoy and the AU High Representative for Mali and the Sahel;

18. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.