Letter dated 31 January 2017 from the Secretary-General addressed to the President of the Security Council
I have the honour to transmit herewith a letter dated 24 January 2017 from the Commissioner for Peace and Security of the African Union Commission, Smaïl Chergui, on behalf of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma (see annex), forwarding the communiqué on the situation in Somalia and the implementation of the mandate of the African Union Mission in Somalia of the 649th meeting of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union, held on 16 January 2017, and the report of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, transmitted in accordance with the requests of the Security Council contained in paragraphs 18 and 44 of its resolution 2297 (2016). I should be grateful if you would bring the present letter and its annex to the attention of the members of the Security Council.
(Signed) António Guterres
Communiqué on the situation in Somalia and the implementation of the mandate of the African Union Mission in Somalia
The Peace and Security Council of the African Union, at its 649th meeting, held on 16 January 2017, adopted the following decision on the basis of its consideration of the report of the Chairperson of the Commission on the situation in Somalia and the implementation of the mandate of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM):
1. Takes note of the report of the Chairperson of the Commission and the briefing made by the Commissioner for Peace and Security on the situation in Somalia and the implementation of the AMISOM mandate, also takes note of the statements made by the representatives of Somalia and Ethiopia, as Chair of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and as African member of the United Nations Security Council, as well as by the representatives of Egypt, China, France, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the United States of America, the European Union and the United Nations;
15. Requests the Commission to transmit this communiqué and the report of the Chairperson of the Commission on Somalia and the implementation of the AMISOM mandate to the United Nations Secretary-General for onward transmission to the United Nations Security Council for its action as appropriate;
16. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.
Report of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission on the situation in Somalia and the implementation of the mandate of the African Union Mission in Somalia
1. The present report is submitted pursuant to paragraphs 18 and 44 of United Nations Security Council resolution 2297 (2016), adopted at its 7731st meeting, held on 7 July 2016. In that resolution, the Security Council requested the African Union to keep the Council regularly informed, through the Secretary-General, on the implementation of the Mission’s mandate, and regularly report to the Council, through the provision of oral updates and written reports. In addition, the Peace and Security Council of the African Union, at its 608th meeting, held in Addis Ababa on 29 June 2016, reiterated the need for the periodic reporting on AMISOM operations, including on the implementation of the revised concept of operations. Accordingly, the present report covers major developments in Somalia during the period from 1 September to 31 December 2016.
II. Main political and related developments
2. Somalia continues to make significant political progress in particular in relation to the federalization and electoral processes. With respect to the federalization process, the Hiraan-Middle Shabelle interregional state formation conference concluded on 17 October with the formation of the Hirshabelle regional administration, whose Assembly elected the Regional President, Vice-President, Speaker and Deputy Speaker. This milestone benefitted from the support and commitment of a high-level joint committee, comprising the African Union, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the United Nations, the European Union and the Federal Government of Somalia. In addition to political support, AMISOM provided protection for all stakeholders involved in the reconciliation and state formation process, in accordance with United Nations Security Council resolution 2297 (2016). The state formation process has now shifted to the formalization of the six interim administrations into federal member states and the establishment of functional local governments within the states in line with the 2020 Somali political road map.
3. I am happy to note that the conduct and outcome of the unique 2016 electoral process provides an important stepping stone towards universal suffrage in Somalia. An important outcome from this process is that Somalia now has a bicameral assembly and is working towards the selection of a new President by the end of January 2017. In support of the process, the African Union Commission deployed a short-term electoral support mission to Somalia to observe, assess the process and provide surge support and expert advice to AMISOM political leadership. Furthermore, AMISOM, in collaboration with other international partners, continues to engage with the relevant stakeholders, including the Federal Government, the Somalia National Leadership Forum, the Federal Indirect Electoral Implementation Team, the state-level indirect electoral implementation team, the independent electoral dispute resolution mechanism, Somali women representatives and Coalition for Change, among others, in order to address various election-related issues, such as ensuring security during elections, the achievement of the quota of seats in parliament reserved for women and the settlement of electoral disputes.
4. In line with its mandated responsibilities, the Mission continues to ensure the security of the 2016 electoral process, which is ongoing without major incidents. Within its capabilities, AMISOM adopted a two-pronged approach in its support to the electoral process through the provision of a safe and peaceful environment, as well as advocacy and the sensitization and mobilization of Somalis towards inclusive participation in the electoral process. Overall, AMISOM support to the entire conduct of the electoral process has been remarkably successful.