Communiqué of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 462nd meeting on the situation in Somalia and the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM)

By African Union Commission (AUC)
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ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, October 23, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 462nd meeting held on 16 October 2014, adopted the following decision on the situation in Somalia and the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM):


1. Takes note of the Report of the Chairperson of the Commission on the situation in Somalia [PSC/PR/2.(CDLXII)] and the briefings provided by the Commissioner for Peace and Security and the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the Commission for Somalia, Head of AMISOM. Council also takes note of the statements made by the representatives of Somalia, Ethiopia, as chair of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Uganda, as a troop contributing country to AMISOM, the United Nations and the European Union (EU), as well as by the representatives of China, France, Nigeria, United Kingdom and United States of America, as members of the UN Security Council, and Italy, as Co-chair of the IGAD Partners Forum;

2. Recalls its previous decisions and press statements on the situation in Somalia, including communiqué PSC/PR/COMM.1(CCCLVI) adopted at its 356th meeting held on 27 February 2013, communiqué PSC/PR/COMM.(CDXIV) adopted at its 414th meeting held on 21 January 2014, and press statement PSC/PR/BR.(CDXXV) adopted at its 425th meeting held on 24 March 2014;

3. Reiterates its commitment to the unity, territorial integrity and sovereignty of Somalia;

4. Reaffirms AU's full support to the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) and its commitment to continue to assist the FGS in its stabilization and reconstruction efforts, including the implementation of the Government's Vision 2016 Agenda and the New Deal Somali Compact;

5. Welcomes the FGS-led efforts towards the establishment of interim district and regional administrations in the newly-recovered areas, and underlines the urgent need to complete the establishment of interim regional administrations throughout Somalia by the end of 2014, based on the principles of political inclusivity and transparency and in accordance with the Provisional Federal Constitution;

6. Further welcomes the establishment of the Independent Constitutional Review and Implementation Commission and the Boundaries and Federation Commission, which gives impetus to the FGS's commitment to conduct legitimate and inclusive national elections in 2016. In this regard, Council requests the relevant structures within the Commission, in close consultation with the United Nations and other international stakeholders, to provide the necessary support to the FGS;

7. Notes with satisfaction the security gains recorded by AMISOM and the Somalia National Army (SNA) during Operations Eagle and Indian Ocean, which made it possible to recover several towns and villages from the Al-Shabaab terrorist group. Council stresses the need to consolidate these gains through the immediate provision of humanitarian assistance and basic social services, as well as the implementation of quick impact projects. Council encourages the FGS, with the support of the United Nations and other partners, to urgently take all necessary steps in this respect. Council further encourages the FGS to ensure that the SNA hold on to and secure the recovered areas;

8. Commends, once again, AMISOM for its outstanding contribution to the improvement of security in Somalia, the stabilization of the country and furtherance of the reconciliation process. Council reiterates its appreciation to AMISOM troop (Burundi, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sierra Leone and Uganda) and police (Ghana, Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Uganda) contributing countries (T/PCCs) for their commitment and sacrifices;

9. Requests the Commission to undertake, in close coordination with the United Nations Secretariat, a joint review of AMISOM, especially the implementation of the AMISOM Concept of Operations (CONOPS), with a view to enhancing the planning and effectiveness of the joint SNA and AMISOM operations;

10. Welcomes the continuing efforts by the Commission and AMISOM to ensure that the Mission and its personnel uphold the highest standards in terms of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (IHL), including a zero tolerance to all forms of misconduct and indiscipline. In this regard, Council notes with satisfaction the decision taken by the Commission to thoroughly investigate the allegations of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (SEA) leveled against some AMISOM personnel. Council further notes with satisfaction the additional measures and steps that the Commission and the AMISOM leadership are planning to take, including the adoption of a one-year plan on SEA, the inclusion of a specific Annex on SEA into the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the T/PCCs, and the improvement of welfare and recreation facilities for all AMISOM personnel;

11. Reiterates its appreciation to IGAD and to its Chairperson, Prime Minister Haile Mariam Dessalegn of Ethiopia, for their continued commitment and sustained efforts towards the promotion of lasting peace, security, stability and reconciliation in Somalia. Council notes in particular IGAD's central role in facilitating the conclusion and implementation of the Addis Ababa Agreement of 28 August 2013, the Agreements to form interim regional administrations in the South-West and Central regions of Somalia, signed on 23 June and 30 July 2014, respectively, and the Agreement of 14 October 2014 between the FGS and Puntland, as important steps forward in the path towards peace and state-building in Somalia;

12. Reiterates AU's appreciation to the United Nations for its continued support to AMISOM, notably through the support package authorized by the UN Security Council, and expresses appreciation to the Security Council for its historic visit to Somalia on 13 August 2014. Council also reiterates its appreciation to the European Union (EU) and its Member States, the United States of America and other partners for their continued support to AMISOM and to peace and stabilization efforts in Somalia. Council encourages them to continue and enhance their support, especially with regard to the provision of enablers and force multipliers to AMISOM and infrastructure to the SNA and the Somali Police Force (SPF);

13. Welcomes the outcomes of the Conference on Support to the SNA, which took place in London, United Kingdom, from 17 to 18 September 2014, as a key contribution to the ongoing professionalization of the SNA and the SPF. Council calls upon international partners to provide to the SNA and the SPF enhanced and more flexible logistical support, as well as training and capacity building support;

14. Welcomes the convening of the High-Level Meeting on Somalia in New York, on 24 September 2014, which discussed the political process in Somalia, based on the FGS's Vision 2016 - Agenda for Political Transformation, and looks forward to the Ministerial High-Level Partnership Forum to be held in Copenhagen, Denmark, from 19 to 20 November 2014, which will be an opportunity to agree on the key priorities for 2015, in line with the Vision 2016 Agenda;

15. Welcomes the appointment of Ambassador Maman S. Sidikou, from Niger, as the new Special Representative of the Chairperson of the Commission for Somalia and Head of AMISOM, and pays tribute to his predecessor, Ambassador Mahamat Saleh Annadif, for his leadership and outstanding contribution to the quest for peace, security and reconciliation in Somalia. Council calls upon the new Special Representative to closely engage the leadership of the FGS on the key elements of the political process and joint military operations;

16. Renews the mandate of AMISOM for a further period of 12 months and, with reference to operative paragraph 1 of resolution 2124(2013), adopted by the UN Security Council on 12 November 2013, requests the Security Council to renew for a further period of 12 months, starting from 31 October 2014, the authorization to the AU Member States to maintain the deployment of AMISOM, to enable the Mission to continue to carry out its mandate and to take all necessary measures to this effect;

17. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.