UNOAU participates in the Inaugural Retreat of the AUC, AU SRCCs, UN SRSGs and SESGs in Cairo

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17 Oct 2023

UNOAU participates in the Inaugural Retreat of the AUC, AU SRCCs, UN SRSGs and SESGs in Cairo

On 16 October, UNOAU and the AUC PAPS jointly convened the “Inaugural Retreat of the AUC Special Representatives of the Chairperson (SRCCs), UN Special Representatives of the Secretary-General (SRSGs), and Special Envoys of the Secretary-General (SESGs) in Cairo, Egypt.

The inaugural retreat took place ahead of the AU’s “14th High-Level Retreat on the Promotion of Peace, Security and Stability”, also held in Cairo, on 17 and 18 October, to which UN SRSGs and SESGs were invited. The retreat was an opportunity for joint consultation, analysis, and engagement between the AU and the UN in crafting a coordinated response strategy to Africa’s peace, security, and governance challenges. The retreat provided a platform for SRCCs, SRSGs, and SESGs to interact, form common understanding of prevailing and emerging challenges to peace, security, and governance in Africa, share lessons learned in pursuit of their respective mandates in Africa, and identify strategies to leverage the joint AU-UN partnership to address underlying drivers of conflict in Africa.

In the joint statement adopted at the end of the meeting, the AU SRCCs, UN SRSGs and SESGs recalled the 2017 “Joint AU-UN Framework for Enhanced Partnership in Peace and Security” and the 2018 “AU-UN Framework for the Implementation of AU Agenda 2063 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” underscoring the determination of both organizations to enhance the strategic partnership in thematic areas of common interest, including on preventing, mediating and resolving conflict and sustaining peace, addressing the root causes of conflict, as well as addressing the peace, security and development nexus. They committed to support initiatives aimed at building effective state institutions and promoting inclusive governance and engaging and empowering women and youth in decision-making processes on peace, security, and sustainable development on the Continent.

The AU SRCCs, UN SRSGs and SESGs agreed to work towards aligning positions on complex political transitions to complement the implementation of decisions adopted by the two organizations and to explore modalities to support enhanced democratic governance in Africa. They further reaffirmed their commitment to enhance joint conflict prevention and mediation initiatives, including through joint field visits. In light of the evolving security landscape across Africa, they further reaffirmed the significant contributions of AU-led PSOs in maintaining regional and continental peace and security, particularly in contexts where there is “no peace to keep”, and underlined the need for the provision of predictable, sustainable, and flexible financing, including through UN assessed contributions on a case-by-case basis. They expressed concern about the crisis of multilateralism while recognizing that the AU-UN partnership represents a model of international cooperation and renewed their commitment to enhancing collaboration among the Member States, AUC, UN Secretariat, RECs/ RMs, and other relevant stakeholders in the implementation of the “AU Master Roadmap of Practical Steps to Silence the Guns in Africa by 2030”. The AU SRCCs, UN SRSGs and SESGs agreed to institutionalize and regularize the holding of the Joint Retreat as a platform to enhance information sharing toward forging a common understanding of the peace and security challenges and approaches to address them.  The next retreat is scheduled to take place in 2024 on a mutually agreed date. Read full joint statement here.