Special report of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission and the Secretary-General of the United Nations on the strategic review of the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (S/2017/437) [EN/AR]

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I. Introduction

1. Pursuant to Security Council resolution 2296 (2016), the Secretary-General recommended in his letter dated 28 October 2016 addressed to the President of the Security Council (S/2016/915) that a joint African Union-United Nations strategic review of the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) should be undertaken, in close consultation with the Government of the Sudan, to provide detailed recommendations to the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council on the mission’s priorities and configuration and that, if necessary, further revision of the benchmarks to reflect the realities in Darfur be proposed. It was recommended that the review be undertaken in December 2016 and that the recommendations be submitted to both Councils in January 2017. The previous review of UNAMID was conducted in December 2013 (see S/2014/138).

2. A joint African Union-United Nations strategic review team visited Khartoum and Darfur from 5 to 17 March 2017. It was co-led by the African Union Liaison Office in the Sudan and the Department of Peacekeeping Operations and comprised representatives from the African Union Commission, the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, the Department of Political Affairs, the Department of Field Support and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), as well as from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, representing United Nations development and humanitarian agencies, funds and programmes, respectively. The strategic review team held consultations with government officials and the United Nations country team, visited all five Darfur states and a number of team sites and met state and local authorities, representatives of the communities of internally displaced persons, the native administration and civil society groups.

3. The report provides a conflict analysis that depicts the current conflict dynamics and drivers in Darfur, as well as the political and humanitarian situation. In the report, the strategic priorities of UNAMID are examined, and a refocusing of the priorities in accordance with the conflict analysis is proposed. The report concludes with recommendations for the reconfiguration of UNAMID that seek to adapt the mission to the evolving realities on the ground and to the needs of the people in Darfur.

II. Conflict analysis

4. Over the past three years, the armed conflict that gave rise to the deployment of UNAMID has altered in the light of the military successes of the Government of the Sudan against the rebel movements. Simultaneously, alongside the national dialogue launched in October 2015, the political framework agreement for the resolution of the conflict, the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur, has been included in the Constitution. However, key provisions have yet to be implemented, and a number of outstanding issues related to the aftermath of the conflict and crucial grievances at the origin of the rebellion still need to be addressed.