UN Security Council briefed on the 11th Annual Joint Meeting of UNSC-AUPSC…
Ethiopia's Permanent Representative to the United Nations Security Council, Ambassador Tekeda Alemu, who holds the Security Council Presidency this month, on Tuesday this week (September 12) briefed the Security Council on the 11th Annual Joint Consultative Meeting of UNSC and the African Union Peace and Security Council (AUPSC), held last week in Addis Ababa.
Ambassador Tekeda said that the purpose of the Council's visit to Addis Ababa was to strengthen partnership and enhance cooperation between the United Nations and African Union in the areas of peace and security. The meeting was undertaken within the framework of cooperation between the United Nations Security Council and African Union Peace and Security Council under Chapter VIII of the Charter of the United Nations. The 11th Annual Joint Consultative Meeting offered a platform for the two Councils to exchange views covering three country specific issues as well as regional affairs: the situations in Somalia, South Sudan, and the Lake Chad Basin. According to Ethiopia's Permanent Representative, the discussion demonstrated that there were many points of convergence between the two Councils especially on most aspects of the situation in South Sudan and with regard to some of the issues concerning Somalia and the Lake Chad Basin.
Expressing their concern on the continued violence and suffering of the South Sudanese people, both councils urged parties to the conflict to respect the ceasefire and implement the 2015 Agreement. They commended the leading role played by IGAD to help stabilize the country and expressed support including for IGAD's latest initiative to revitalize the 2015 Peace Agreement. While also underlining that there was no military solution to the problems in South Sudan, the two councils urged parties to commit themselves to a peaceful dialogue. They called for the urgent deployment of the Security Council-authorized Regional Protection Force.
On Somalia, Ambassador Tekeda said both Councils recognized the key role played by AMISOM in degrading the capability of Al-Shabaab and underlined the importance of supporting the capacity of Somali National Army so that it could take over from AMISOM. In this regard, he added, the two councils called for concerted efforts among the UN, AU and sub-regional countries to help address the fragile situation and bring lasting solution in Somalia.
On the Lake Chad Basin, the two Councils commended the crucial role being played by the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) and the resulting progress achieved thus far in fighting Boko Haram.Taking note of the regional dimension of the security threats and their cross-cutting nature, the councils also emphasized the need to address the underlying causes of conflict in the sub-region, including challenges resulting from climate change, underdevelopment and unemployment. Both councils called for an integrated approach to address existing security threats in the sub-region.
The Joint Consultative Meeting was also preceded by an informal meeting between members of the two Councils, co-chaired by Ethiopia's Permanent Representative and the Chairperson of the AU Peace and Security Council, the Permanent Representative of Botswana to the African Union. The informal session focused on three thematic issues: partnership between the UN and AU; funding for African peace and security activities; and post-conflict peace building.
Both the informal meeting and the 11th Joint Consultative Meeting provided opportunities for the members of the two Councils to exchange views on matters related to peace and security in Africa. Ambassador Tekeda described the meetings as "very useful". They enabled the Security Council delegates to better understand the position of the African Union on some of the issues of great importance to the work of the Security Council. Equally, he added, it provided an opportunity to explain and witness diverging views on a number of areas including the issue of funding the AU peace support operations. He said: "Here, one noted, justified or not, the deep disappointment of the African side with respect to what in their view has been a huge deficit in burden-sharing whose effect has been to give short shrift to the sacrifices by the African side".
Ambassador Tekeda said the members of the Security Council delegation had also held "extremely useful" discussions with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam. These, he said, covered the latest developments in the peace and security issues in the Horn of Africa, focusing in particular on Somalia and South Sudan.
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