Important progress in African-led efforts, and significant achievements in reducing conflict. But serious threats remain, requiring both continued efforts and funding from within Africa, and collective international action.
Africa: African Governments have emphasized as imperative the need to intensify security cooperation under the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) and have institutionalized innovative conflict prevention, management and resolution mechanisms at continental and regional levels. They have established the Peace and Security Council (PSC), a 15,000-troop-strong African Standby Force (ASF), a Special Peace Fund, a Panel of the Wise, and a Continental Early Warning System (CEWS). Recent commitments have reaffirmed the principle of ‘African solutions to African problems’, building on pledges to consolidate progress, strengthen institutional capacities, secure flexible but predictable funding and build relationships with the UN and other partners. African governments have also adopted a number of common positions, including on the Proliferation, Circulation and Trafficking of Small Arms and Light Weapons, the Prevention and Combat of Terrorism, the Prevention and Control of Organized Transnational Crime and the Protection of and Assistance to Internally Displaced People.
Development partners: Development partners have made commitments in three areas: support to African efforts in peace-building, including through commitments to train and equip peacekeeping forces, build institutional capacities, and improve their funding and disbursement mechanisms. They have committed to support the global peace and security architecture through the UN system. They have also pledged to address drivers of conflict and insecurity, including terrorism, the trafficking of small arms and light weapons, and the illicit trade in natural resources and narcotics.
What has been done to deliver on these commitments?
Africa: Africa: The African Peace and Security Architecture is increasingly operational, though problems remain. In the 3 month period January-start April 2012 alone, the PSC met on 10 occasions and intervened politically and/or militarily in 6 cases. In 2011 it reviewed 10 cases. Actions, often in response to issues of governance and economic reform (see Topics 11 and 12), have ranged from political statements and interventions, travel bans and freezing funds, to military action.
Development partners: Development partners have given strong support to the APSA through provision of financial assistance, capacity building and national expertise, and met commitments on training. However, funding has often been provided in an ad-hoc and uncoordinated fashion, and legal constraints on the uses to which some funds can be put have limited development of regional and continental military capabilities. Some bilateral partners have provided support to AMISOM, including equipment, training and logistical assistance. Development Partners are providing most of the funding for AU and REC’s operations, and the UN Security Council continues to explore modalities for funding future AU peacekeeping operations.
Direct support to African initiatives has occurred within a broader framework of support and cooperation through the UN, with a global 2011/12 peacekeeping budget of US$7.1 billion, exclusive of resources for newly established mission such as UNMISS and UNIFSA.
Development partners have continued support towards breaking the links between natural resources and conflict including through active participation in the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme for rough diamonds.
What results have been achieved?
Looking across a longer time horizon, there has been a significant reduction in the number of conflicts since the 1990s and early 2000s. There is currently one low-intensity inter-state conflict in Africa in which the AU is actively mediating, and no cases of conflict in one state drawing in its neighbours across a region. The number of countries currently experiencing internal conflict has also reduced, and involves five, down from eleven two years ago and 14 five years ago. Although Africa still accounts for 23% of refugees and 42% of IDPs worldwide, it is no longer true that half of all wars are fought on African soil. While in 2002 55% of violent conflicts took place in sub-Saharan Africa, in 2011 the share had dropped to 24%.There have been a number of successes in building stability post conflict. As a result of effort put into post conflict reconstruction, including work on political transition and building institutions, elections have been held in nine post conflict countries (see also Topic 11).
What are the future priority actions?