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South Sudan: Joint Communiqué Issued by Members of United Nations Security Council, African Union Peace and Security Council (19 July 2018)

Source: African Union, UN Security Council
Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan, World

SC/13430

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council held their twelfth annual joint consultative meeting in New York on 19 July 2018.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council reaffirmed the primary responsibility of the Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and the mandate of the Peace and Security Council with regard to the promotion of peace, security and stability in Africa as provided for in the Protocol Relating to the Establishment of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union. They also reaffirmed the provisions of Chapter VIII of the Charter of the United Nations on the role of regional arrangements in the pacific settlement of local disputes.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council discussed matters of peace and security in Africa, in particular the situations in South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They seized the opportunity of the informal meeting held on the margins of the joint consultative meeting to exchange views on the institutional reforms currently under way both at the United Nations and the African Union and their significance for enhancing the partnership between the United Nations and the African Union.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council also assessed the progress made in further strengthening the cooperation between the two organizations in the area of peace and security, including the holding of the annual meeting of the leadership of the United Nations and the African Union. They expressed their strong support for the cooperation between the two organizations and their leadership as well as the joint visit undertaken in April 2018, by the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, and the African Union Commissioner for Peace and Security, Smaїl Chergui, to the Central African Republic and Sudan, which illustrated on the level of their enhanced partnership regarding peace and security in Africa. In that context, and in light of the importance of close United Nations-African Union cooperation, they affirmed the intention to consider joint visits of the Security Council and the Peace and Security Council of the African Union to conflict situations in Africa. The modalities of such visits will be discussed and agreed on a case-by-case basis by the two Councils.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council commended the crucial contribution and role of the African Union in efforts aimed at preventing, managing and resolving conflicts and crises in Africa and discussed options for funding the African Union peace and security activities. They recalled United Nations Security Council resolutions 2320 (2016) and 2378 (2017), which stress the need to enhance the predictability, sustainability and flexibility of financing for African Union-led peace support operations authorized by the Security Council and under the Security Council’s authority consistent with Chapter VIII of the Charter. In this regard, they took note of the annual report of the Secretary-General on United Nations-African Union cooperation, which details the work done on strengthening mandating, management, oversight and accountability of African Union-led peace support operations. They also acknowledged the development of operations mandated or authorized by the African Union. They also recognized the need to strengthen the African Union’s operational and financial frameworks to enable African Union missions to appropriately plan, finance, conduct and evaluate their efforts. They also welcomed the African Union’s plan to finalize its human rights and conduct and discipline frameworks, which are critical to achieve greater accountability, transparency, and compliance with international human rights law, international humanitarian law, as applicable and with the United Nations conduct and discipline standards.

In the context of the partnership between the United Nations and the African Union, the members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council also discussed the African Union’s goal of Silencing the Guns in Africa by the year 2020, with a view to building a conflict-free continent. In this regard, they exchanged views on possible cooperation in the implementation of the African Union Master Roadmap of Practical Steps to Silence the Guns in Africa by the Year 2020. They also agreed to strengthen efforts in conflict prevention.

On the Situation in South Sudan

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council expressed serious concern over the overall situation in South Sudan. They reaffirmed their belief that only a political solution to the conflict in South Sudan will bring sustainable peace, and further noted all the parties must urgently demonstrate a strong will to an inclusive and revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in [Republic of] South Sudan in order to end the longstanding conflict in the country. They called upon all South Sudanese parties to focus on the interest of the people of South Sudan and secure a future for the children of the country.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council welcomed the efforts of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and regional initiatives, including through the face-to-face meetings between Salva Kiir Mayardit and Riek Machar, to resolve the outstanding issues at the High-Level Revitalization Forum. They welcomed the Khartoum Declaration Agreement of 27 June 2018 and urged the South Sudanese parties to make further compromises on the outstanding issues that result in a credible, inclusive, and sustainable agreement and expeditiously conclude the revitalization process. They remain convinced that the establishment of the Hybrid Court in South Sudan would contribute towards addressing the issue of impunity and promoting justice and reconciliation.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council strongly condemned the repeated violations of the Agreement on Cessation of Hostilities, Protection of Civilians, and Humanitarian Access by the parties as reported by the Ceasefire and Transitional Security Arrangements Monitoring Mechanism and the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission and expressed serious concern at reports that there already had been violations of the permanent ceasefire announced by the parties in Khartoum in June 2018. They underscored the need to hold the violators of the Agreement accountable and to ensure that there is an end to the culture of impunity for those responsible for perpetuating violence.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council paid tribute to the troop and police contributing countries to the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) for the sacrifices being made for the restoration of peace, security and stability in South Sudan. They also commended the Special Representatives of the African Union and the United Nations for their contribution in support of efforts aimed at finding a lasting solution to the crisis in South Sudan.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council strongly condemned all forms of physical and bureaucratic impediments preventing the effective delivery of humanitarian assistance. They noted that 107 humanitarian workers have died since the conflict began, making South Sudan a particularly challenging environment for humanitarian workers and called on all parties to stop the targeting of those delivering lifesaving aid immediately.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council encouraged continued close collaboration between the United Nations, the African Union and IGAD and reaffirmed their collective commitment in the search for lasting peace, security and stability in South Sudan.

On the Situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

The members of the Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council expressed concern at the continued deterioration of the security and humanitarian situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. While taking note of key milestones in the electoral process being reached, they expressed concern about remaining challenges to foster greater confidence in the process. They called upon all political parties, their supporters, and other political actors to remain committed to the 31 December 2016 Agreement, which is the only viable path out of the current political situation.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council urged all political parties to continue to reject violence of any kind, exercise maximum restraint in their actions and statements, so as not to further inflame the situation and to address their differences peacefully. In particular, they called on the Government of Democratic Republic of the Congo and all Democratic Republic of the Congo actors to reject violence and violent statements. They reiterated that effective, swift and sincere implementation of the December Agreement, including the Agreement’s confidence-building measures, as well as respect for fundamental rights and the electoral timeline, are essential for a peaceful and credible electoral process, a democratic transition of power, and the peace and stability of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They called on the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) and all stakeholders to work together towards the holding of elections on 23 December. They reiterated their commitment to take appropriate measures against all Congolese actors, and any others, whose actions and statements impede the implementation of the Agreement and the organization of the elections.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council underscored that it is essential that the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and all Democratic Republic of the Congo actors fulfil the commitments in the Agreement of 31 December 2016, and underscored the need to do everything possible to ensure that the elections take place with the requisite conditions of transparency, credibility and inclusivity, including the full and effective participation of women at all stages, as well as the importance of youth engagement. They also underscored that elections must lead to a peaceful and democratic transfer of power, in accordance with the Constitution, the Political Agreement of 31 December 2016, United Nations Security Council resolutions 2348 (2017) and 2409 (2018), as well as the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council urged the Government of Democratic Republic of the Congo to urgently implement confidence-building measures as per the Political Agreement of 31 December 2016 and ensure that elections are held on 23 December 2018 as per the electoral calendar. They noted the progress made in preparation for the elections with the support of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO), while acknowledging the remaining challenges still to be addressed. They called on the CENI to continue their cooperation with MONUSCO throughout the electoral process. They further welcomed the commitment by the United Nations, the African Union, Southern African Development Community (SADC), Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), International Conference on the Great Lakes, European Union and the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie to support the electoral process, and the establishment of a joint team of experts from these organizations, and encouraged the CENI to make use of their support.

The members the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council called for enhanced coordination between the United Nations, the African Union, the International Conference on the Great Lakes, the SADC, the European Union and the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie in their support to the implementation of the 31 December 2016 Agreement and the electoral process.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council paid tribute to the bravery of troop- and police-contributing countries to MONUSCO who sacrificed their lives for the restoration of peace, security and stability in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council commended the efforts deployed by the African Union and the international community in support to the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s efforts to tackle the Ebola virus disease outbreak, in May and June 2018, in the country.

The members of the United Nations Security Council and the African Union Peace and Security Council agreed to convene their thirteenth annual joint consultative meeting and fourth informal joint seminar in 2019, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, at a date to be mutually agreed.

For information media. Not an official record.

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