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01 Nov 2018 description

Specific steps are needed for the African Union’s new Youth for Peace Africa Programme to work.


19 Oct 2018 description

To withstand the inevitable natural disasters climate change will bring, better disaster risk management must start now.

Human activity has caused the temperature of the Earth and its atmosphere to rise by about 1°C above pre-industrial levels, triggering fundamental changes to the planet’s physical and social landscapes. On 8 October an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned that temperatures were rising faster than expected, and that 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels could occur as early as 2030.

16 Oct 2018 description

The African Union (AU) has started setting up a Mediation Support Unit (MSU) at its headquarters in Addis Ababa. This is to support the various efforts across Africa to make peace. Technical obstacles, such as where the unit should be based, as well as problematic coordination between the various AU departments, are, however, slowing down its implementation.

09 Oct 2018 description

Africa needs inclusive health and educational systems that eliminate the stigma around mental illness.

By Stellah Kwasi

The negative impact of armed conflict on the mental health of combatants is well documented. But it wasn’t until about two decades ago that literature on the effect of conflict on civilians began emerging.

01 Oct 2018 description

The obstacles preventing the deployment of the African Standby Force (ASF) is on the agenda of the Peace and Security Council (PSC) for October 2018. This is after an earlier meeting, planned for 19 September, was postponed. Indications are that an overhaul of the ASF concept will include some elements of the now almost defunct African Capacity for Immediate Response to Crises (ACIRC), notably its flexibility.

01 Oct 2018 description

The AU has helped reduced coups, but steers clear of other tactics used to subvert democracy.


Most African countries now hold regular elections, albeit often flawed and contested. Fewer coups on the continent are largely the result of the African Union’s (AU) rejection of unlawful take-overs. And yet democracy continues to be subverted in other ways, like constitutional coups.

27 Sep 2018 description

In this issue:

Is the African Charter on democracy strong enough?

The AU’s African initiative vs. Russian/Sudanese mediation in the CAR

Looting could make South Sudan’s peace efforts impossible

Political infighting endangers SADC’s hard work in Lesotho

Discussions around the African Standby Force gain momentum

27 Sep 2018 description

Forecasting for peace

Modelling the risk of political instability can identify opportunities for investing in development and peace.

By Julia Bello-Schünemann and Jonathan D Moyer

Sub-Saharan Africa has made important peace and security gains over the past two decades. Large-scale political violence has declined and fewer people are dying in wars. But other forms of political violence have increased, and the region’s future will still be turbulent.

31 Aug 2018 description

In this issue:

How the latest AU decision on Western Sahara could affect other crises

The African Union and the question of LGBTI-rights

The AU will have to do more to convince SADC

Helping those affected by Boko Haram to get back on their feet

Interview with Nicholas Haysom, UN Special Envoy for Sudan and South Sudan

30 Aug 2018 description

Key findings

  • The launch in 2013 of the African Union’s Agenda 2063 coincided with a strong upward trend in armed conflict to peak in 2015. The subsequent trend has been downward, with violence involving militant Islamist groups (and state responses) remaining the most resilient.

  • It is unlikely that Africa will be able to ‘silence the guns by 2020’, or indeed by 2023. Yet progress in advancing peace, stability and growth is evident across the continent.

28 Aug 2018 description

Tomorrow’s Security Council debate on mediation is a good opportunity to bolster joint UN-AU efforts

Africa’s peace and security challenges are too complex for either the United Nations (UN) or the African Union (AU) to tackle on their own. Over the years, the two have partnered to prevent, manage and resolve conflict.

22 Aug 2018 description

At its 31st summit in Nouakchott, Mauritania the African Union (AU) decided to limit its own peace efforts in the Western Sahara in order to support the process led by the United Nations (UN). This support will be through a troika of heads of state, together with the AU Commission (AUC) chairperson. The move is a big win for Morocco, which believes the AU-led efforts are biased. However, it could set a precedent for other AU member states that disapprove of AU interventions.

01 Aug 2018 description

In this issue:

Focus on the 31st AU summit:

  • Scrutiny of its budget a first for the AU
  • Who will oversee Africa’s new free trade area?
  • The African Union reform: much still to be decided

PSC Interview: ‘The role of Cameroon’s friends could be decisive’

Decisions of the PSC from April to June 2018

29 Jun 2018 description

A clear division of labour, mutual trust and increased support are needed to strengthen the alliance.


‘I have addressed this council several times over the past year on peacekeeping reform. It is now time to take action together,’ said United Nations (UN) Secretary-General António Guterres on 28 March. The statement launched the Action for Peacekeeping (A4P) initiative, part of a new attempt aimed at mobilising political action around the UN peacekeeping reform process.

26 Jun 2018 description

EU funding remains vital, but self-reliance is ultimately needed for Africa’s long-term peace and security.


22 Jun 2018 description

The Peace and Security Council (PSC) was briefed by the Head of the Reform Implementation Unit of the African Union (AU) in May 2018 about the options to reform the body and increase its effectiveness. This could include strengthening its working methods and its role in managing crises. However, the AU should also consider updating the PSC Protocol.

19 Jun 2018 description

In this issue:

Focus on the 31st AU summit:

  • Staying the course to reform the AU

  • What role for the AU in the Sahel?

  • Why another power-sharing deal in South Sudan has collapsed

  • The future of EU support for APSA: issues to look out for

Is the PSC Protocol still up to date?

13 Jun 2018 description

Women and girls face bigger barriers to education in sub-Saharan Africa than in other regions.

Seventy years ago, the world agreed on the importance, and right of all people, to education. Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted in 1948, states that ‘[e]veryone has the right to education’, and that elementary education shall be compulsory and free.

25 May 2018 description
  • FemWise-Africa aims to include more women in peace processes

  • Calls for the AU to play a role in humanitarian crises – can it work?

  • The dilemma of free movement of people on an insecure continent - Can Weah realise his pro-poor economic development agenda?

  • UAE port deal with Somaliland stirs up trouble in the Horn - PSC Interview: ‘Expect a more robust NEPAD Agency’

24 May 2018 description

The African Union must play a bigger role in preventing conflict and building sustainable peace.


Key points

Defining success: The AU’s conflict prevention activities and the definition of successful conflict prevention must be better understood.

Funding: Predictable and increased AU funding should enable more consistent approaches to prevention.