COMMUNIQUÉ OF AU PEACE AND SECURITY COUNCIL ON SOMALIA

The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 508th meeting held on 18 May 2015, adopted the following decision on the situation in Somalia and the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM):

Council,

Takes note of the briefings provided by the Commissioner for Peace and Security and the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the Commission for Somalia and Head of AMISOM. Council also takes note of the statements made by the representatives of Ethiopia, as Chair of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Uganda, as a troop contributing country to AMISOM, the United Nations (UN) and the European Union (EU), as well as by the representatives of France, the United Kingdom and the United States of America, as members of the UN Security Council, and Italy, as co-Chair of the IGAD Partners Forum;

Recalls its previous communiqués and press statements on the situation in Somalia;

Reaffirms the 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, the New Deal Compact for Somalia, as well as the Guulwade “Victory” Plan developed in March 2015 and endorsed by the FGS and its partners on 24 April 2015, to stand up the Somalia National Army (SNA) and defeat Al Shabaab;

Welcomes the FGS-led efforts and the steady progress made in the establishment of interim regional administrations in the recovered areas, in particular the launching of the state formation process for Hiraan and Middle Shabelle regions and the central region, in Adaado, on 16 April 2015. Council notes with satisfaction the steps taken towards the implementation of the Addis Ababa Agreement of 29 August 2013, with the inauguration of the first regional assembly for the Interim Jubbaland Administration, on 7 May 2015;

Welcomes follow-up steps to the second meeting of the Somalia Leadership Forum, held in Garowe, Puntland, on 1 May 2015, and attended by the Presidents of the Interim Regional Administrations, to discuss Vision 2016 and other matters relating to the preservation of the unity, territorial integrity and sovereignty of Somalia;

Further welcomes the operationalization of the Independent Constitutional Review and Implementation Commission and the Boundaries and Federation Commission, as well as the reconvening, on 27 April 2015, of the Federal Parliament to finalize key legislation for the national elections scheduled 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;

Urges the Somali political leadership to step up its efforts towards the integration of the various militia forces under a unified national command of the SNA, in order to ensure that Somalia consolidate and safeguard the gains made on the ground and facilitate reconstruction and peace-building as part of the exit strategy for AMISOM. In this regard, Council welcomes the efforts exerted by AMISOM on the integration and continuous training of the SNA, in line with the priority of the FGS, the mandate of AMISOM and the outcome of the Somalia security conference held in London in September 2014;

Takes note of the joint AU-UN benchmarking exercise of AMISOM undertaken from 14 to 25 April 2015, to establish benchmarks for the deployment of a UN peacekeeping operation in Somalia and assess the progress made by AMISOM. Council looks forward to the report and recommendations of the joint exercise, for consideration;

Takes note of the findings and recommendations of the investigation into allegations of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (SEA) leveled against some AMISOM personnel, undertaken between November 2014 and February 2015. Council urges for the scrupulous implementation of these recommendations and, in this respect, welcomes the steps that the Commission and the AMISOM leadership have already taken, 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 troop and police contributing countries, and the improvement of welfare and recreation facilities for AMISOM personnel;

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;

Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

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