UNOAU participates in the 1151st AUPSC Session on “ONE YEAR OF ATMIS OPERATIONS: PROGRESS, CHALLENGES, AND FUNDING”
On 28 April, the AUPSC convened its 1151st session to address ‘One Year of ATMIS: Progress, Challenges, Funding’. The Permanent Representative of the Republic of Tunisia to the AU and Chairperson of the AUPSC for the month of April, Abdelhamid Gharbi, delivered opening remarks, followed by statements by the AUC Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security (PAPS), Bankole Adeoye; the SRSG to the AU and Head of UNOAU; and the Head of the EU Delegation to the AU, Ambassador Birgitte Markussen. The AU Special Representatives of the Chairperson of the Commission (SRCC) to Somalia and Head of ATMIS, Ambassador Mohamed El-Amine Souef, also attended the session.
Ambassador Bankole Adeoye commended the efforts of the EU, UN, partners, ATMIS and troop and police contributing countries (T/PCCs) for their sacrifices for the cause of African peace. He specifically mentioned the (indirect) elections of 2022 in Somalia as a milestone achievement, and progress made in the on-going joint offensive against Al-Shabab by the Somali National Army and ATMIS.
In his remarks, the SRSG UNOAU said that the United Nations, jointly with partners, is working to assist Government led stabilization activities in the newly recovered areas to support a comprehensive approach encompassing reconciliation, establishing governance structures and service delivery. He urged partners to provide additional resources and provide financing for stabilization activities, which are critical for long-term sustainable solutions. He also commended the work of ATMIS in the past year and the critical role it played in supporting Somalia. He paid tribute to ATMIS and the Somali Security Forces, noting that their commitment to the country’s peace and stability has come at the cost of significant sacrifices. The SRSG UNOAU emphasized that the United Nations-African Union partnership remains strong in Somalia and ensured continued close cooperation in the period ahead - to ensure Somalia is best supported.
The SRSG to the AU and Head of UNOAU highlighted overall progress achieved in Somalia in the past year, with notable progress on the political, security and economic fronts. He underscored the completion of the constitutional review process as critical to further advance the state-building agenda, emphasized the closer collaboration between the Federal Government of Somalia and Federal Member States, noting that it remained vital to advance key priorities. He further expressed deep concern about funding shortfalls for ATMIS despite AU-UN joint efforts in this regard.
On 1st April 2023, African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) completed its first year of a successful journey for the cause of peace in Africa in general and Somalia in particular. Based on UNSCR 2628, the mission transitioned from African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) on 1st April 2022 and started with its mandated tasks. As delineated in the Concept of Operations (CONOPs), the mission is planned for 33 months in 4 phases up to 31st December 2024. The mission is broadly mandated to gradually degrade and finally defeat Al-Shabab and Armed other Groups operating in Somalia by the 3rd Phase, i.e., 30th June 2024 and hand over the security responsibilities to Somali Security Forces (SSF). ATMIS is the only ongoing AU-mandated and administered Peace Support Operation.
From the very onset, UNOAU has been working in close partnership with AU to assess, plan and manage ATMIS. UNOAU effectively contributed to formulating the Joint AU-UN Nations Proposal on the Strategic Objectives, Size and Composition of a reconfigured AMISOM, UNSCR 2628 and ATMIS CONOPs before the transition started and in assessing, evaluating and facilitating the mission after the transition had taken place. In the last year, UNOAU assisted ATMIS and the AU in achieving a few of the milestones, especially the support provided to Somalia during the election of 2022, drafting the Statement of Unit Requirement (SUR) for ATMIS, conducting a successful Equipment Review of the mission to enhance its capabilities, and liberating a few areas from Al-Shabab through joint offensive operations in close collaboration with Somali National Army (SNA) and ATMIS. UNOAU will continue to work with the AU to provide the required technical expertise and advise for the successful implementation of the ATMIS mandate.
Read full communiqué here.