ACCORD attended the ‘Future Directions for AMISOM and AU Peace Operations’ Seminar and the Annual Civilian Strategic Support Group (CSSG) Meeting from 4 to 6 December 2019 at the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
The seminar on the Future Directions for AMISOM and AU Peace Operations which took place on 4 December 2019 in the Julius Nyerere Peace and Security Building at the African Union Commission, investigated the Effectiveness of Peace Operations (EPON) and Training for Peace (TfP) projects and for these projects to present their research findings from the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). The panel discussions focused on future directions for AMISOM and AU PSOs and the findings were centred on the effectiveness of AMISOM, the Impact of terrorism on AMISOM, lessons for African Troop Contributing Countries (TCCs) and stabilisation options for countries affected by violent extremism in Africa.
The CSSG was established pursuant to the declaration of the 8th Ordinary Meeting of the Specialized Technical Committee on Defence Safety and Security (STCDSS) held in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, from 13 to 15 May, 2015. The CSSG was preceded by the African Standby Force (ASF) Civilian Focal Points Planning Meeting that was established in 2010 and aimed at developing annual joint work plans of the Civilian Component of the AU and RECs/RMs to ensure development of a multidimensional ASF. Launched in 2016, the CSSG was thus built on the successes of the ASF Civilian Focal Points Planning Meeting and serves as an advisory platform to support the African Union (AU) Peace Support Operations Division (PSOD) in the continuous enhancement of the civilian component to guarantee multidimensional AU PSO. The CSSG therefore seeks to promote common understanding of the roles, functions and responsibilities of civilian personnel in AU Peace Support Operations (PSO). Through its annual meetings, the CSSG brings together participants from AU mandated and authorised PSOs, RECs/RMs, Training Centres of Excellence (TCEs), Member States and experts to discuss issues of common interest. It therefore provides opportunity for interaction, communication, collaboration and coordination among these stakeholders.
This year’s CSSG meeting examined the current status, gaps and key priorities of the civilian component at PSOD and mission level. It further examined the roles, functions and responsibilities of the civilian component as it relates to AU mandated and authorized PSO and examined the required support for civilian component in AU PSO, including the architecture required to support civilian personnel in operations mandated by RECs/RMs and/or coalitions of states. The CSSG meeting was attended by civilians from two AU Mandated and Authorized Missions (AMISOM and MNJTF), one REC (EASF), Tis/TCEs (APSTA, EMPABB and IPSTC), the United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU), the TfP Secretariat, NUPI, ACCORD and other international partners as well as technical personnel from the AU Peace Support Operations Division (PSOD).
ACCORD/TfP and the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI) were the principal partners of the AU PSOD in coordinating the annual CSSG workshop. ACCORD/TfP was represented by Professor Martin Rupiya, Training and Innovations Manager; Ms. Nontobeko Zondi, Programme Officer, Local and National Capacities and Miss. Rumbidzaishe Matambo, Intern, Peace support Operations Cluster. Participation in activities that focus on Peace Operations capacity enhancement, is in line with ACCORD/TfP Programme’s strategic goal of supporting efforts at strengthening the AUC, RECs/RMs and member states operational capacities and capability to plan, manage and implement PSOs or responding through other intervention modalities on the continent. The support aims at ensuring effective functioning of organizational systems in the UN/AU/RECs/RMs, member states and mission structures.
The Training for Peace Programme at ACCORD is an initiative funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. For more information on ACCORD’s work relating to the TfP Programme, please contact Ms Sibusisiwe Nkosi, Programme Officer, Peace Support Operations Cluster on firstname.lastname@example.org.