UN and AU Deliberate Future of Peacekeeping Missions in Africa

Soukaina Sghir
Soukaina Sghir
2 Min Read

The future of peacekeeping operations in Africa has become increasingly uncertain, with Mali abruptly requesting the departure of Minusma forces in June 2023 and the DRC strongly advocating for the commencement of Monusco’s withdrawal this December.

In light of these developments, the United Nations (UN) is contemplating how to address the threats posed by terrorists and armed groups on the African continent and how to replace the blue helmets. This critical question took center stage at the seventh conference on relations between the UN and the African Union (AU). Additionally, both organizations signed an agreement affirming the respect for human rights.

Leaders of the African Union and the UN argue that the traditional peacekeeping missions conceived decades ago are no longer relevant in dealing with the escalating violence on the ground. Moussa Faki, the President of the AU Commission, emphasized the need for a new model, stating, “The nature of this threat in the African continent requires an appropriate response. It is not for lack of proposing, as Africans, to make forces available.”

President Faki further asserted, “These African missions must be funded by UN resources. This is a threat to peace and security, and it is the responsibility of the UN Security Council.” The financing issue raises concerns among the five permanent members in New York, who view premature withdrawals of blue helmets with skepticism. However, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres reassures that the African Union is capable of successfully executing these missions.

Guterres highlighted, “The compliance standards set by the African Union are perfectly compatible with ours. The agreement we reached today on human rights is an additional guarantee that we can trust the African Union to organize effective peacekeeping operations in Africa.” The confidence in the AU’s ability to lead such missions is a crucial aspect amid ongoing discussions about the evolving landscape of peacekeeping efforts in the region.

Soukaina Sghir

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