TRES\007\11\2015: THEMATIC RESOLUTION ON PEACE AND SECURITY
We, the participants of the Forum on the Participation of NGOs in the 57thOrdinary Session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the 31st African Human Rights Book fair held in Banjul, The Gambia from 31st October–2nd November 2015;
Deeply concerned by the on-going conflict situations in Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Burundi, Kenya, Lesotho, Libya, Nigeria, Somalia, Sudan South Sudan.
Deeply concerned by reports of serious crimes under international law, and widespread violations of humanitarian and human rights law, including the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, being committed by all parties to the conflicts in these countries;
Considering that despite the existing regional normative and institutional frameworks for addressing conflicts, and threats of conflicts, in Africa, there seems to be serious limitations in coordinated responses to conflict threats, and human rights violations related to conflicts in Africa;
Noting that the Commission’s performance and capacity to champion a human rights approach to conflict prevention, management and resolution is yet to be fully realised;
Call upon the African Commission:
- To develop a comprehensive and decisive strategy for addressing conflict-related human rights violations in Africa;
- In relation to the on-going armed conflicts in Africa and the serious human rights violations associated with these conflicts, utilise its powers under Article 58 of the African Charter on Human & Peoples’ Rights to ‘draw the attention of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government to these special cases’;
- To work with the special interest group on Peace and Security, which is hereby established as focal point for NGOs, to coordinate further discussions and reflections amongst NGOs and the Commission during the inter-session period, by designating a Special Mechanism or Commissioner, with the aim of developing recommendations and strategies for enhancing the role of the African Commission in responding to conflicts in Africa;
- To further work towards bringing a wider group of NGOs and other stakeholders into this discussion during the inter-session period, and specifically commit to convening a consultative workshop on the margins of the upcoming Assembly of the AU Heads of States;
- To consider using civil society expertise in developing an action plan for enhancing the Commission’s role in responding to on-going and emerging conflicts in Africa, including in strengthening its coordination mechanisms with the African Union, the Peace and Security Council of the African Union, and other relevant sub-regional bodies in Africa;
- To convene an open panel and interactive session on conflicts and human rights in Africa in its agenda for the 58th Ordinary Session of the Commission, in order to open space for wider discussion and the adoption of more effective strategies to respond to conflicts in Africa.
Done in Banjul, The Gambia – 2nd November, 2015