Press Statement of the 500th meeting of the Peace and Security Council on the situation in Libya

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, April 29, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 500th meeting held on 27 April 2015, reviewed the situation in Libya on the basis of the report submitted by the Chairperson of the Commission [PSC/PR/3(D)] and the update provided by the AU Special Envoy for Libya, Dileita Mohamed Dileita. Council also listened to the statements made by the representative of Libya, as well as by those of Algeria and Egypt, on behalf of the Ministerial Committee of Libya’s neighbours, Ethiopia, the League of Arab States, the European Union (EU), the United Nations (UN) Secretariat and the following members of the UN Security Council: France, Nigeria, New Zealand, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States of America.

Council reiterated its deep concern at the collapse of state structures and the prevailing security situation in Libya. In this respect, Council noted the fighting that is taking place in various parts of Libya between the armed belligerents, as well as the deliberate targeting of civilians and civilian institutions and public infrastructures, including airports and oil installations, in total disregard of international humanitarian and human rights laws. Council expressed dismay at the disastrous humanitarian impact of the current situation.

Council further noted the worsening of the scourge of terrorism in Libya, with the continued activities of Al-Qaeda-linked terrorist groups and individuals, the increasing presence of the Islamic State (IS) and the declarations of allegiance to the IS by terrorist groups operating in Libya. Council reaffirmed the AU’s total rejection of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, and strongly condemned the terrorist groups operating in Libya and their criminal activities, including the gruesome killing of African migrants of Egyptian and Ethiopian origin. Council renewed the AU’s solidarity with the peoples and Governments of Egypt and Ethiopia, and Africa’s resolve to do all it can to contribute to the elimination of the terrorist groups active in Libya.

Council also noted that the prevailing anarchy in Libya has facilitated the activities of the criminal networks involved in human trafficking towards Europe, leading to the loss of countless human lives during attempts to cross the Mediterranean Sea. Council underlined the need for effective international action to address both the immediate and long-term aspects of the problem, through enhanced cooperation involving all concerned stakeholders. In view of the gravity of the situation and the need for Africa to fully play its role in the search for a lasting solution to this problem, Council requested the Commission to urgently submit to it a comprehensive report, with practical recommendations on the way forward.

Council reiterated its conviction that there can be no military solution to the crisis in Libya. Council, once again, called on the Libyan stakeholders to genuinely commit themselves to dialogue, in order to bring to an end the suffering being inflicted upon their own people, complete the transition process and live up to the hope generated by the popular uprising of February 2011. In this respect, Council reiterated its support to the UN-led political dialogue, and urged all concerned Libyan stakeholders to extend the necessary cooperation to this process. Council also reiterated its appreciation to the countries of the region for their continued involvement in the search for peace, security and reconciliation in Libya. Council looks forward to the holding, in due course, of the reconciliation conference planned by Algeria, as well as to the meeting of tribal leaders scheduled to take place in Egypt.

Council welcomed the steps taken by the Commission in follow-up to the relevant provisions of communiqué PSC/MIN/COMM.(CDLIX) adopted at its 459th meeting held in New York, on 23 September 2014. In this respect, Council noted with satisfaction the operationalization of the International Contact Group for Libya (ICG-L) and the conclusions adopted by the three meetings the Group has held so far. Council stressed the central role of the ICG-L in ensuring a coordinated international engagement in Libya and encouraged the Commission, working with all concerned international stakeholders, to take the necessary steps towards the enhancement of the Group, to enable it more effectively discharge its mandate.

Council also welcomed the efforts deployed by the AU Special Envoy, in particular the consultations he held with various Libyan stakeholders and the countries of the region. Council called for the intensification of these consultations, with a view to increasing the AU’s role and contribution to the search for a solution.

Council requested the Commission to make further recommendations on how best to enhance the AU’s contribution to the search for a solution to the current crisis, bearing in mind the responsibilities of Council and the provisions of Chapter VIII of the UN Charter on the role of regional arrangements in the maintenance of international peace and security.

Council agreed to meet, as early as possible, to further review the situation. Council noted, in this respect, the proposal put forward by Ethiopia for the convening of a meeting of Council at ministerial level.

Source:: Press Statement of the 500th meeting of the Peace and Security Council on the situation in Libya

Categories: African Press Organization

Press Statement of the 500th meeting of the Peace and Security Council on the situation in Libya

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, April 29, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 500th meeting held on 27 April 2015, reviewed the situation in Libya on the basis of the report submitted by the Chairperson of the Commission [PSC/PR/3(D)] and the update provided by the AU Special Envoy for Libya, Dileita Mohamed Dileita. Council also listened to the statements made by the representative of Libya, as well as by those of Algeria and Egypt, on behalf of the Ministerial Committee of Libya’s neighbours, Ethiopia, the League of Arab States, the European Union (EU), the United Nations (UN) Secretariat and the following members of the UN Security Council: France, Nigeria, New Zealand, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States of America.

Council reiterated its deep concern at the collapse of state structures and the prevailing security situation in Libya. In this respect, Council noted the fighting that is taking place in various parts of Libya between the armed belligerents, as well as the deliberate targeting of civilians and civilian institutions and public infrastructures, including airports and oil installations, in total disregard of international humanitarian and human rights laws. Council expressed dismay at the disastrous humanitarian impact of the current situation.

Council further noted the worsening of the scourge of terrorism in Libya, with the continued activities of Al-Qaeda-linked terrorist groups and individuals, the increasing presence of the Islamic State (IS) and the declarations of allegiance to the IS by terrorist groups operating in Libya. Council reaffirmed the AU’s total rejection of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, and strongly condemned the terrorist groups operating in Libya and their criminal activities, including the gruesome killing of African migrants of Egyptian and Ethiopian origin. Council renewed the AU’s solidarity with the peoples and Governments of Egypt and Ethiopia, and Africa’s resolve to do all it can to contribute to the elimination of the terrorist groups active in Libya.

Council also noted that the prevailing anarchy in Libya has facilitated the activities of the criminal networks involved in human trafficking towards Europe, leading to the loss of countless human lives during attempts to cross the Mediterranean Sea. Council underlined the need for effective international action to address both the immediate and long-term aspects of the problem, through enhanced cooperation involving all concerned stakeholders. In view of the gravity of the situation and the need for Africa to fully play its role in the search for a lasting solution to this problem, Council requested the Commission to urgently submit to it a comprehensive report, with practical recommendations on the way forward.

Council reiterated its conviction that there can be no military solution to the crisis in Libya. Council, once again, called on the Libyan stakeholders to genuinely commit themselves to dialogue, in order to bring to an end the suffering being inflicted upon their own people, complete the transition process and live up to the hope generated by the popular uprising of February 2011. In this respect, Council reiterated its support to the UN-led political dialogue, and urged all concerned Libyan stakeholders to extend the necessary cooperation to this process. Council also reiterated its appreciation to the countries of the region for their continued involvement in the search for peace, security and reconciliation in Libya. Council looks forward to the holding, in due course, of the reconciliation conference planned by Algeria, as well as to the meeting of tribal leaders scheduled to take place in Egypt.

Council welcomed the steps taken by the Commission in follow-up to the relevant provisions of communiqué PSC/MIN/COMM.(CDLIX) adopted at its 459th meeting held in New York, on 23 September 2014. In this respect, Council noted with satisfaction the operationalization of the International Contact Group for Libya (ICG-L) and the conclusions adopted by the three meetings the Group has held so far. Council stressed the central role of the ICG-L in ensuring a coordinated international engagement in Libya and encouraged the Commission, working with all concerned international stakeholders, to take the necessary steps towards the enhancement of the Group, to enable it more effectively discharge its mandate.

Council also welcomed the efforts deployed by the AU Special Envoy, in particular the consultations he held with various Libyan stakeholders and the countries of the region. Council called for the intensification of these consultations, with a view to increasing the AU’s role and contribution to the search for a solution.

Council requested the Commission to make further recommendations on how best to enhance the AU’s contribution to the search for a solution to the current crisis, bearing in mind the responsibilities of Council and the provisions of Chapter VIII of the UN Charter on the role of regional arrangements in the maintenance of international peace and security.

Council agreed to meet, as early as possible, to further review the situation. Council noted, in this respect, the proposal put forward by Ethiopia for the convening of a meeting of Council at ministerial level.

Source:: Press Statement of the 500th meeting of the Peace and Security Council on the situation in Libya

Categories: African Press Organization

U.S. Condemns Boko Haram Attacks in Niger

WASHINGTON, April 29, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Press Statement

Jeff Rathke

Acting Deputy Department Spokesperson, Office of the Spokesperson

Washington, DC

April 28, 2015

We condemn the attacks by Boko Haram on Karamga Island in Lake Chad, which killed 48 Nigerien security forces and wounded another 37, with others still missing. We offer our condolences to the Government and people of Niger and to the families and loved ones of those who lost their lives and who are missing.

We condemn the violent actions of Boko Haram and its continued disregard for human life. Boko Haram has perpetrated countless unprovoked attacks on men, women, and children in their homes, schools, places of worship, and businesses. Their brutality and barbarism know no bounds.

The United States is committed to supporting the efforts of the Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF) to help the countries of the region increase their capabilities to degrade and destroy Boko Haram. We commend efforts by the African Union and Lake Chad Basin Commission countries and Benin to stand up the MNJTF.

Source:: U.S. Condemns Boko Haram Attacks in Niger

Categories: African Press Organization

THE AFRICAN UNION DEEPLY CONCERNED BY THE ATTACKS ON UNAMID PEACEKEEPERS

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, April 28, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, is deeply concerned by the deadly incidents which took place on 23 and 24 April 2015 in Kass, South Darfur. Peacekeepers from the AU–United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) protecting water points were attacked by gunmen.

The Chairperson of the Commission strongly condemns these attacks on UNAMID, which is deployed solely to assist in stabilizing the Darfur area, including through the provision of security to civilians. She deeply regrets the loss of life recorded during those incidents.

The Chairperson of the Commission stresses the need to pursue transparent and fair investigation into the incidents, in order to swiftly bring the perpetrators to justice. She welcomes the commitment of UNAMID to cooperate fully with the Government, using the agreed upon mechanisms, to facilitate an effective stabilization of the area, in order to avoid a recurrence of such incidents. Meanwhile, the Chairperson of the Commission urges the local communities to exercise utmost restraint and to desist from any action likely to heighten tension in the area.

The Chairperson of the Commission reiterates AU’s full support to UNAMID in its continued efforts to maintain stability, including through engagement with local communities. She also reaffirms the AU’s commitment to continue working with the Governments of Sudan and UNAMID in the search for a lasting solution to the crisis in Darfur.

Source:: THE AFRICAN UNION DEEPLY CONCERNED BY THE ATTACKS ON UNAMID PEACEKEEPERS

Categories: African Press Organization

Mali / Peace Process in Danger

BAMAKO, Mali, April 28, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — In light of the dangerous developments on the ground in Ménaka yesterday and in Timbuktu today, the SRSG and Head of MINUSMA, Mr. Mongi Hamdi, expresses his great concern regarding the peace process that was begun more than a year ago to resolve the Malian security crisis in a lasting and peaceful way.

“Early this morning, near Timbuktu, MINUSMA vehicles were targeted outside the city by the CMA. There were no casualties. The CMA have indicated to us that this was an error on their part, and demand the departure of FAMa,” the SRSG said. “These two events are extremely worrying as they endanger the peace process. We are currently establishing the facts,” he added.

The ceasefire agreements signed by the parties foresee that they stay in their positions during the negotiations and that they abstain from any action – direct or indirect – that would undermine the prospects for peace. MINUSMA, which is completely impartial, insists that these commitments be respected by all.

“The MINUSMA teams on the ground and in Bamako are completely committed to ending this very worrying spiral of tensions as quickly as possible. We are in contact with the Plateforme, the Coordination and the Government of Mali to achieve a return to calm as soon as possible. I therefore reiterate my appeal for calm to give dialogue and peace a chance. I regret the turn of events, but I remain optimistic regarding the chances of seeing the peace process successfully concluded next month. There is no alternative to the signing of the peace agreement,” the SRSG concluded.

Source:: Mali / Peace Process in Danger

Categories: African Press Organization

Secretary Kerry Travel to Colombo, Nairobi and Djibouti

WASHINGTON, April 28, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to Colombo, Sri Lanka, on May 2 for his first trip to the country and the first visit by a Secretary of State since 2004.

In Colombo, he will meet government leaders, civil society members, and other representatives from the country’s diverse communities to hear and express U.S. support for their vision for a more peaceful, stable, and prosperous future for its people. Secretary Kerry will also join his hosts for the celebration of the Buddhist holiday of Vesak.

Secretary Kerry will also visit Nairobi, Kenya, beginning on May 3, to reinforce the importance of our strong bilateral relationship. In his meetings with government officials, business leaders, opposition leaders, humanitarian aid organizations and civil society representatives, he will discuss a range of issues including security cooperation — particularly in light of the recent tragic attack at Garissa University College –refugee assistance, trade, and biodiversity.

This visit will focus on our common goals, including accelerating economic growth, strengthening democratic institutions, and improving regional security.

The Secretary will travel to Djibouti, Djibouti, on May 5, where he will meet high-level leaders to discuss our bilateral cooperation and their support to evacuation efforts from Yemen. He will engage with Djiboutian youth and religious leaders on a range of issues. The Secretary will also visit with U.S. military personnel at Camp Lemonnier.

This is the first time that a sitting Secretary of State will visit Djibouti.

Source:: Secretary Kerry Travel to Colombo, Nairobi and Djibouti

Categories: African Press Organization