ACCORD, through its Training for Peace in Africa (TfP) Programme, has addressed participants at the Southern African Development Community's (SADC) Regional Peacekeeping Training Centre (RPTC) on the important role of civilians in peace support operations.
The SADC RPTC held a two-week Battalion Commanders' Course from 21 May to 01 June 2012, in Harare, Zimbabwe. The course targeted military personnel earmarked for deployment in Peace Support Operations, and aimed to equip the selected participants with the requisite skills enabling them to work effectively as Peace Mission Battalion, Contingent or Sector Commanders. TfP/ACCORD contributed to the programme with a presentation on 'The Civilian Dimension of Peace Operations', represented by Mr. Zinurine Alghali, Peacekeeping Unit Coordinator, who addressed the participants on the crucial role the civilian component of modern multidimensional peace operations play in securing and working towards sustainable peace processes in the region and beyond.
The presentation provided ACCORD an excellent opportunity to further strengthen its partnership with one of the most prominent regional training centres in Africa, as well as reaffirm its continuing support of the work of the SADC RPTC. Such training support to key Regional Training Centres of Excellence contributes towards the development of civilian and multidimensional capacities required for current and future African Union (AU) peace operations, including those utilising the African Standby Force (ASF) which is entirely dependent on regional mechanisms such as SADC. This is in line with the core goals of the Training for Peace in Africa Programme at ACCORD (TfP/ACCORD) which seeks to significantly improve the civilian capacity of regional mechanisms, as well as other organisational structures within the AU and UN, in preparing, managing and monitoring multidimensional peacekeeping and peacebuilding operations in Africa.
ACCORD's work on strengthening civilian capacities is conducted through its Training for Peace Programme, an initiative funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.