EU/Afrika

11TH AFRICAEU MINISTERIAL TROIKA MEETING

Joint Com­mu­niqué
11TH AFRICAEU MINISTERIAL TROIKA MEETING
Addis Aba­ba, 20–21 Novem­ber 2008

With­in the frame­work of the Africa-EU Dia­logue, the 11th Min­is­te­r­i­al Meet­ing of the African and EU Troikas took place in Addis Aba­ba, Ethiopia from 20 to 21 Novem­ber 2008. The meet­ing of Min­is­ters was co-chaired by Hon. Mr. Bernard K. Mem­be, Min­is­ter for For­eign Affairs and Inter­na­tion­al Coop­er­a­tion of the Unit­ed Repub­lic of Tan­za­nia and cur­rent Chair­per­son of the African Union (AU) Exec­u­tive Coun­cil, and H.E. Mr. Bernard Kouch­n­er, Min­is­ter for For­eign and Euro­pean Affairs of France and cur­rent Pres­i­dent of the Coun­cil of the Euro­pean Union (EU).

The African Troi­ka was also com­posed of H.E. Mr. John Aggrey, rep­re­sent­ing Hon. Akwasi Osei Adjei, Ghana­ian Min­is­ter of For­eign Affairs, Region­al Inte­gra­tion and NEPAD; H.E. Dr. Maxwell M. Mkweza­lam­ba, AU Com­mis­sion­er for Eco­nom­ic Affairs; and H.E. Ambas­sador Ram­tane Lamam­ra, AU Com­mis­sion­er for Peace and Secu­ri­ty.

The EU Troi­ka was also com­posed of Direc­tor-Gen­er­al Mr. Ste­fano Manservisi rep­re­sent­ing H.E. Mr. Louis Michel, EU Com­mis­sion­er for Devel­op­ment and Human­i­tar­i­an Aid and Rela­tions with African, Caribbean and Pacif­ic States, H.E. Mrs. Hele­na Bam­baso­va, Vice Min­is­ter of For­eign Affairs of the Czech Repub­lic, and H.E. Mr. Koen Ver­vaeke, EU Ambas­sador to the AU, rep­re­sent­ing the EU High Rep­re­sen­ta­tive for Com­mon For­eign and Secu­ri­ty Pol­i­cy.

The Min­is­te­r­i­al Troi­ka meet­ing wel­comed the pres­ence of Min­is­ters of Defense on 21 Novem­ber. Min­is­ters of Defense were rep­re­sent­ed on the African side by Hon. Dr. Emmanuel Nchim­bi, Deputy Min­is­ter for Defense and Nation­al Ser­vice of the Unit­ed Repub­lic of Tan­za­nia, and on the EU side by H.E. Mr. Jean-Marie Bock­el, Sec­re­tary of State in the Min­istry of Defense of France, and by H.E. Mrs. Hele­na Bam­baso­va, Vice Min­is­ter of For­eign Affairs of the Czech Repub­lic. In their pres­ence the meet­ing exam­ined the peace and secu­ri­ty part­ner­ship of the Lis­bon Action Plan and had an exchange of views on secu­ri­ty at sea and on the fight against pira­cy.

1. IMPLEMENTATION OF THE JOINT STRATEGY/FIRST ACTION PLAN

    a) Con­sid­er­a­tion of the Joint Experts Group (JEG) Report on the eight
    part­ner­ships (Projects, activ­i­ties, financ­ing, imple­men­ta­tion time­frame) Min­is­ters wel­comed the progress report on the imple­men­ta­tion of the Africa-EU Joint Strat­e­gy and its first Action Plan (2008–2010). They under­lined that the full imple­men­ta­tion of the ambi­tious and far-reach­ing Strate­gic Part­ner­ship is a long-term project and that progress is achieved only step by step. In this light Min­is­ters com­mend­ed the Joint Experts Groups for the work done so far and called on all par­ties to expe­dite efforts with a view to attain­ing tan­gi­ble results with­in the time­frame of the First Action Plan (2008–2010).

    Min­is­ters stressed the need for ade­quate finan­cial resources to effec­tive­ly imple­ment the Joint Strategy/First Action Plan, and reit­er­at­ed their request for efforts to be made by both sides to allo­cate the nec­es­sary funds in order to fos­ter imple­men­ta­tion. In this regard, they attached par­tic­u­lar impor­tance to the work to be done by the Joint Expert Groups in iden­ti­fy­ing the financ­ing require­ments, the sources of financ­ing and the pro­ce­dures for access­ing these finan­cial instru­ments.

    Min­is­ters wel­comed efforts to strength­en the dia­logue between the two sides and not­ed with sat­is­fac­tion the Col­lege to Col­lege meet­ing of the AUC and Euro­pean Com­mis­sion held on 1 Octo­ber 2008 in Brus­sels.

    On each of the eight part­ner­ships, Min­is­ters par­tic­u­lar­ly wel­comed the achieve­ments as reflect­ed in the attached Joint Progress Report, notably:

      i. Africa-EU Part­ner­ship on Peace and Secu­ri­ty
      The train­ing cycle for the African Stand-by Force, Amani Africa/Euro Recamp, has been launched, the new African Peace Facil­i­ty for the peri­od 2008–2010 with an amount of EUR 300 mil­lion has been agreed, and the first joint meet­ing of the EU Polit­i­cal and Secu­ri­ty Com­mit­tee and the AU Peace and Secu­ri­ty Coun­cil has tak­en place in Sep­tem­ber 2008. Fur­ther­more, the Joint Expert Group agreed to organ­ise a sem­i­nar on the sup­port of the EU to African train­ing cen­ters in the first trimester of 2009. Min­is­ters agreed to enhance coop­er­a­tion between the EU and the AU sit­u­a­tion cen­tres and to set up a Com­mon Inter­ac­tive Watch and Antic­i­pa­tion Mech­a­nism.

      ii. Africa-EU Part­ner­ship on Demo­c­ra­t­ic Gov­er­nance and Human Rights
      The dia­logue for coop­er­a­tion in inter­na­tion­al fora and on glob­al lev­el has been enhanced and con­crete pro­pos­als in this regard have been made; fur­ther progress towards the estab­lish­ment of the plat­form on gov­er­nance and human rights has been achieved, the dia­logue on human rights has been strength­ened. Progress is expect­ed on the rat­i­fi­ca­tion of the African Char­ter on Democ­ra­cy, Elec­tions and Gov­er­nance. Coop­er­a­tion on elec­tions obser­va­tion will be deep­ened through sup­port to the elec­toral assis­tance and obser­va­tion fund; dis­cus­sions on the pos­si­bil­i­ty of par­tic­i­pa­tion of African elec­tion observers at the 2009 elec­tions for the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment is ongo­ing. In the area of cul­tur­al coop­er­a­tion, an inven­to­ry of the main ongo­ing activ­i­ties will be made. Joint ini­tia­tives to com­bat illic­it trade of cul­tur­al goods will be under­tak­en.

      iii. Africa-EU Part­ner­ship on Trade and Region­al Inte­gra­tion
      Progress has been made in the advance­ment of free trade areas and cus­toms unions. Nego­ti­a­tions of full and com­pre­hen­sive Eco­nom­ic Part­ner­ship Agree­ments (EPA) as an instru­ment to pro­mote pover­ty reduc­tion and sus­tain­able devel­op­ment and the grad­ual inte­gra­tion of the African economies into the glob­al econ­o­my are ongo­ing. The Infra­struc­ture Trust Fund has so far received EUR 146 mil­lion and eight major projects have been approved. The Steer­ing Com­mit­tee of the Infra­struc­ture Trust Fund has met for a sec­ond time and will set up the roadmap and the plan of action for all projects includ­ing the eight which are already approved.

      iv. Africa-EU Part­ner­ship on the Mil­len­ni­um Devel­op­ment Goals
      Dur­ing 2008, Year of Action on the MDGs, a series of inter­na­tion­al events and ini­tia­tives have made impor­tant con­tri­bu­tions to the achieve­ment of the MDGs in Africa and world­wide. For exam­ple the Euro­pean Coun­cil adopt­ed the EU Agen­da for Action which out­lines mile­stones to be achieved by 2010 in order to attain the MDGs, includ­ing spe­cif­ic ini­tia­tives for Africa. The UN High Lev­el Events in New York in Sep­tem­ber 2008 reaf­firmed a col­lec­tive com­mit­ment to achiev­ing the MDGs glob­al­ly with a spe­cif­ic focus on Africa and result­ed in sub­stan­tial com­mit­ments, includ­ing in the areas of food secu­ri­ty, health and edu­ca­tion. The Accra High Lev­el Forum on Aid Effec­tive­ness held in Sep­tem­ber 2008 made impor­tant steps towards coor­di­na­tion and har­mon­i­sa­tion, which will be essen­tial to achiev­ing the MDGs. The work of the MDGs Part­ner­ship links coher­ent­ly with the out­comes of these events and process­es, in order to ensure har­mo­ny between the var­i­ous MDGs focused ini­tia­tives. The Joint Experts Group will meet again in March 2009. The­mat­ic sub groups on food secu­ri­ty, health and edu­ca­tion, will be fol­lowed by a meet­ing of the co-chairs and oth­er part­ners to agree on a con­sol­i­dat­ed set of fol­low up actions.

      v. Africa-EU Part­ner­ship on Ener­gy
      A Joint State­ment on the Imple­men­ta­tion of the Africa-EU Ener­gy Part­ner­ship was signed by the two Com­mis­sions, which defines inter alia actions regard­ing improved ener­gy access and ser­vices in Africa as well as ener­gy secu­ri­ty for both sides. Sev­er­al ener­gy projects have been or are about to be launched in 2008, financed by indi­vid­ual EU Mem­ber States as well as by the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion.

      vi. Africa-EU Part­ner­ship on Cli­mate Change
      Progress has been made in set­ting up pri­or­i­ties for coop­er­a­tion and in iden­ti­fy­ing deliv­er­ables and joint ini­tia­tives as con­tained in the Joint Progress report. Min­is­ters took note of the progress made in the elab­o­ra­tion of a Joint Dec­la­ra­tion to be sub­mit­ted in time by Africa and the EU to the Poz­nan Con­fer­ence on Cli­mate Change on 3 Decem­ber 2008. They man­dat­ed the Troi­ka at ambas­sado­r­i­al lev­el to meet in Novem­ber 2008 in order to adopt the Joint Dec­la­ra­tion tak­ing into account the African posi­tion on cli­mate change as adopt­ed by the Con­fer­ence of African Min­is­ters of Envi­ron­ment in Algiers held on 20 Novem­ber 2008.

      vii. Africa-EU Part­ner­ship on Migra­tion, Mobil­i­ty and Employ­ment
      Efforts have been made to fur­ther struc­ture the dia­logue with African Dias­po­ra; a Migra­tion Infor­ma­tion and Man­age­ment Cen­tre has been opened in Mali and oth­er open­ings in oth­er coun­tries are in the pipeline; dis­cus­sions on the migra­tion fund and on the estab­lish­ment of the African remit­tances insti­tute are ongo­ing. Experts will meet for the first time on 26 Novem­ber 2008 in Brus­sels to make progress in the var­i­ous pri­or­i­ty actions of the Part­ner­ship on Migra­tion, Mobil­i­ty and Employ­ment tak­ing into account the dia­logue and the deci­sions tak­en in the var­i­ous high lev­el fora.

      viii. Africa-EU Part­ner­ship on Sci­ence, Infor­ma­tion Soci­ety and Space
      An agree­ment on the imple­men­ta­tion of six ear­ly deliv­er­able projects has been found which are includ­ed in the book of light­house projects, as well on the estab­lish­ment of an Africa/EU high lev­el plat­form for joint efforts in sci­ence, infor­ma­tion soci­ety and space, includ­ing in the frame­work of the African-EU Sci­ence and Tech­nol­o­gy Dia­logue Ini­tia­tive. This dia­logue will facil­i­tate the cre­ation of a spe­cif­ic com­mon deci­sion-mak­ing plat­form for joint efforts in Sci­ence, Infor­ma­tion Soci­ety and Space.

    b. Endorse­ment of the cal­en­dar of fol­low-up activ­i­ties for the next six months and rec­om­men­da­tions

    Min­is­ters con­sid­ered and endorsed the joint progress report, includ­ing its rec­om­men­da­tions. They called on all actors to ensure ade­quate fol­low-up with a view to achiev­ing tan­gi­ble results with­in the spec­i­fied time­frames. In this con­nec­tion, Min­is­ters also wel­comed the Joint Expert Group Guide­lines and endorsed it as a liv­ing doc­u­ment to guide the Joint Experts Groups in their work. They urged the co-chairs of the respec­tive Joint Expert Groups to main­tain per­ma­nent con­tact and ensure ade­quate flow of infor­ma­tion to all stake­hold­ers by mak­ing effec­tive use of mod­ern ICT facil­i­ties at their dis­pos­al, includ­ing the recent­ly launched Joint AUC-EC web­site (www.africa-eupartnership. org). The Joint Expert Groups were par­tic­u­lar­ly urged to ensure broad­est pos­si­ble and effec­tive par­tic­i­pa­tion of Mem­ber States and of the African Region­al Eco­nom­ic Com­mu­ni­ties. They were also urged to take all nec­es­sary mea­sures to reach out to stake­hold­ers, includ­ing civ­il soci­ety, the Pan-African and Euro­pean Par­lia­ments, AU ECOSOCC, EU ECOSOC, pri­vate sec­tor and inter­na­tion­al part­ners. Min­is­ters reit­er­at­ed the need to speed up the imple­men­ta­tion process before the mid-term review in 2009.

2. RECENT DEVELOPMENTS SINCE THE 10TH MINISTERIAL TROIKA MEETING

    A. Update on cur­rent issues

    Demo­c­ra­t­ic Repub­lic of Con­go


    Min­is­ters wel­comed the Joint Com­mu­niqué of the Heads of State of the Great Lakes Region on the DRC, result­ing from the Sum­mit held in Nairo­bi on 7 Novem­ber 2008.

    They wel­comed the mis­sions by H.E. Oluse­gun Obas­san­jo, for­mer Pres­i­dent of the Fed­er­al Repub­lic of Nige­ria, UNSG Spe­cial Envoy, and H.E. Ben­jamin Mka­pa, for­mer Pres­i­dent of the Unit­ed Repub­lic of Tan­za­nia, appoint­ed by the Great Lakes Sum­mit.

    They strong­ly con­demned the con­tin­u­a­tion of fight­ing in North Kivu, in the East of the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Repub­lic of Con­go (DRC), fol­low­ing the offen­sive of Con­grès nation­al pour la défense du peu­ple (CNDP). They are deeply con­cerned about the very grave human­i­tar­i­an and secu­ri­ty sit­u­a­tion, which affects hun­dreds of thou­sands of dis­placed per­sons, and which has also a region­al impact. They also call on all con­flict par­ties to respect the inter­na­tion­al human­i­tar­i­an law, in par­tic­u­lar to end abu­sive attacks against women and chil­dren.

    They reit­er­at­ed their sup­port to the insti­tu­tions result­ing from the 2006 elec­tions, as well as the Nairo­bi and Goma process­es.

    In this regard, Min­is­ters request­ed the Gov­ern­ment of the DRC to con­tin­ue with the imple­men­ta­tion of the dis­ar­ma­ment of ille­gal armed groups in the East of the DRC, notably the Forces démoc­ra­tiques de libéra­tion du Rwan­da (FDLR). They urged the coun­tries of the region to con­tin­ue to sup­port the peace process in the DRC and speed up the imple­men­ta­tion of the Pact on Secu­ri­ty, Sta­bil­i­ty and Devel­op­ment in the Great Lakes Region, which was signed in Nairo­bi, on 15 Decem­ber 2006 and entered into force on 21 June 2008.

    Min­is­ters wel­comed the efforts of the UNSG to rein­force MONUC, in par­tic­u­lar by rein­forc­ing its equip­ment and staffing, and to focus its action in the Kivus, help­ing MONUC to imple­ment the pro­vi­sions of Chap­ter VII of the UN Char­ter.

    Min­is­ters com­mend­ed the efforts of the AU, includ­ing the vis­it of the Chair­per­son of the Com­mis­sion H.E. Mr. Jean Ping to the DRC in Octo­ber 2008, the vis­it of the Com­mis­sion­er for Peace and Secu­ri­ty to the region in Novem­ber 2008, and that of the Envoy of the Chair­per­son of the Com­mis­sion to the DRC. They com­mend­ed the vis­it of the Min­is­ter for For­eign and Euro­pean Affairs H.E. Mr. Bernard Kouch­n­er in his capac­i­ty as Pres­i­dent of the EU Coun­cil, togeth­er with Hon. Mr. David Mil­liband, For­eign and Com­mon­wealth Min­is­ter of the UK, the vis­it of H.E. Com­mis­sion­er Louis Michel, as well as the efforts of oth­er inter­na­tion­al stake­hold­ers, name­ly SADC and the Unit­ed Nations. They urged the CNDP to resume its place with­in the Nation­al Pro­gramme for the Secu­ri­ty, Peace, Sta­bil­i­ty and Recon­struc­tion of the Kivus (AMANI Pro­gramme).

    Min­is­ters paid trib­ute to the human­i­tar­i­an orga­ni­za­tions for the remark­able work they are accom­plish­ing on the ground to assist the civil­ian pop­u­la­tion in gen­er­al and dis­placed per­sons in par­tic­u­lar. They expressed their will­ing­ness to increase their sup­port to these organ­i­sa­tions.

    Soma­lia
    Min­is­ters wel­comed the sign­ing, in Dji­bouti on 26 Octo­ber 2008, of an Agree­ment on the Modal­i­ties for the Imple­men­ta­tion of the Ces­sa­tion of Armed Con­fronta­tion between the Tran­si­tion­al Fed­er­al Gov­ern­ment (TFG) and the Alliance for the Re-lib­er­a­tion of Soma­lia (ARS). They com­mend­ed the TFG and the ARS for this fur­ther step in the imple­men­ta­tion of the Dji­bouti Agree­ment of 19 August 2008, and urged them to scrupu­lous­ly com­ply with their com­mit­ments and to form as soon as pos­si­ble a Uni­ty Gov­ern­ment.

    Min­is­ters strong­ly deplored the human­i­tar­i­an sit­u­a­tion in Soma­lia and under­lined the urgency to find a last­ing polit­i­cal solu­tion for Soma­lia. They called upon all par­ties to respect the human rights in Soma­lia and par­tic­u­lar­ly under­lined the vul­ner­a­bil­i­ty of women and chil­dren in that respect.

    Min­is­ters con­demned ter­ror­ist actions in Soma­lia and the recent attacks on AMISOM troops. They also con­demned war meth­ods caus­ing the death of civil­ians. Min­is­ters fur­ther wel­comed the Dec­la­ra­tion adopt­ed by the 13th Extra­or­di­nary Ses­sion of the IGAD Assem­bly of Heads of State and Gov­ern­ment, held in Nairo­bi, Kenya, on 29 Octo­ber 2008. They deplored, how­ev­er, the fur­ther aggra­va­tion of the sit­u­a­tion in spite of this Dec­la­ra­tion, and wel­comed in this light of the 18 Novem­ber 2008 IGAD com­mu­niqué with the view to speed­ing up the imple­men­ta­tion of the Dji­bouti Agree­ment.

    The EU con­grat­u­lat­ed the AU for the work of AMISOM and con­firmed that it will con­tin­ue its finan­cial and tech­ni­cal sup­port to this sta­bil­i­sa­tion force. Min­is­ters once again called on AU Mem­ber States to con­tribute addi­tion­al troops to AMISOM to enable it reach its autho­rized strength, and appealed to the inter­na­tion­al com­mu­ni­ty to pro­vide the nec­es­sary finan­cial and logis­ti­cal sup­port to AMISOM.

    The AU and EU await with inter­est the details of the UNSG plan for the estab­lish­ment of a multi­na­tion­al sta­bil­i­sa­tion force which could rein­force AMISOM. Min­is­ters fur­ther not­ed with con­cern that the aggra­va­tion of the insta­bil­i­ty in Soma­lia favored the increas­ing occur­rence of acts of pira­cy in Soma­li waters and the Gulf of Aden and called on the inter­na­tion­al com­mu­ni­ty to pro­mote prag­mat­ic solu­tions to the prob­lem and, par­tic­u­lar­ly to sup­port mea­sures to ensure effec­tive pros­e­cu­tion and pro­vi­sion of cor­rec­tion­al facil­i­ties.

    In this con­text, the African side con­grat­u­lat­ed the EU for the estab­lish­ment of a coor­di­na­tion cell EU NAVCO, man­dat­ed to coor­di­nate the fight against pira­cy along the Soma­li coast, and for the adop­tion by the EU Coun­cil on 10 Novem­ber 2008 of a Joint Action launch­ing the oper­a­tion ATALANTA due to be oper­a­tional in Decem­ber 2008 which will sig­nif­i­cant­ly increase exist­ing capa­bil­i­ties.

    Min­is­ters reit­er­at­ed their sup­port to the efforts of the UNSGSR for Soma­lia, H.E. Mr. Ahme­dou Ould-Abdal­lah, to advance the polit­i­cal process in the coun­try.

    Sudan and Chad
    Min­is­ters reviewed evo­lu­tions since their last meet­ing and wel­comed the recent devel­op­ments in the rela­tions between Chad and the Sudan, marked by the resump­tion of diplo­mat­ic rela­tions between the two coun­tries. They paid trib­ute to the coun­tries that facil­i­tat­ed this pos­i­tive devel­op­ment. They urged the lead­ers of the two coun­tries to con­sol­i­date the progress thus made in order to pro­mote, in a spir­it of appease­ment, rela­tions of coop­er­a­tion, good neigh­bourli­ness and friend­ship with­in the frame­work of the dif­fer­ent agree­ments they have con­clud­ed, includ­ing the Dakar Agree­ment.

    Min­is­ters expressed sat­is­fac­tion at the ini­tia­tives tak­en by the AU Com­mis­sion in imple­men­ta­tion of the deci­sion of the AU Peace and Secu­ri­ty Coun­cil of 29 June 2008, notably the send­ing of a high-lev­el del­e­ga­tion led by H.E. Pierre Buy­oya, for­mer Pres­i­dent of the Repub­lic of Burun­di, in order to con­tribute to the restora­tion of con­fi­dence and the nor­mal­iza­tion of rela­tions between the two coun­tries.

    Min­is­ters stat­ed that they were con­vinced that the nor­mal­i­sa­tion of rela­tions between the Sudan and Chad would con­tribute to efforts aimed at pro­mot­ing peace, secu­ri­ty and sta­bil­i­ty in Dar­fur.

    Min­is­ters wel­comed the progress achieved in the imple­men­ta­tion of the CPA between North and South Sudan, notably in the Abyei region.

    Despite the ini­tia­tives to re-launch the Dar­fur peace process, par­tic­u­lar­ly the ini­tia­tive of Qatar sup­port­ed by the AU and the EU, Min­is­ters not­ed an extreme­ly wor­ry­ing increase of vio­lence in Dar­fur. Secu­ri­ty con­di­tions for the pop­u­la­tion and for the human­i­tar­i­an organ­i­sa­tions dete­ri­o­rat­ed heav­i­ly. Min­is­ters urged all par­ties to coop­er­ate with the joint medi­a­tor of the AU and the UN, Djib­ril Bas­solé, with­out any pre­con­di­tions.

    Min­is­ters encour­aged the Sudanese author­i­ties to con­tin­ue to imple­ment the com­mit­ments made at the tri­par­tite meet­ing with the AU and UN to ensure rapid deploy­ment and effec­tive func­tion­ing of UNAMID.

    Min­is­ters reaf­firmed that peace and jus­tice are two nec­es­sary com­po­nents in the search for a last­ing solu­tion. To this end, the fight against impuni­ty as well as the pro­mo­tion of rec­on­cil­i­a­tion and heal­ing, should be pri­or­i­ty for the Sudanese gov­ern­ment. The African side reit­er­at­ed the AU posi­tion on this issue, includ­ing the call on the UNSC to defer the appli­ca­tion by the ICC pros­e­cu­tor, as con­tained in the com­mu­niqué adopt­ed by the PSC in Addis Aba­ba on 21 July 2008. The EU recalled that the Inter­na­tion­al Crim­i­nal Court (ICC) is an inde­pen­dent judi­cial insti­tu­tion and plays a fun­da­men­tal role in the pro­mo­tion of jus­tice, and reit­er­at­ed its call on the Sudanese gov­ern­ment to coop­er­ate with the ICC.

    Min­is­ters con­sid­ered that the announce­ment by the Sudanese gov­ern­ment of a cease-fire in Dar­fur a step in the right direc­tion. They urged the par­ties to respect this cease-fire and asked for an effec­tive mech­a­nism for its con­trol. They also urged the par­ties to do every­thing to facil­i­tate the dis­tri­b­u­tion of human­i­tar­i­an aid to the pop­u­la­tions and the dis­placed per­sons. They favor­ably wel­comed the results of the Ini­tia­tive of the Sudanese Peo­ple (ISP) and invit­ed the Sudanese Gov­ern­ment to take these results into account. They also called on all par­ties to the con­flict to stop with­out delay the repeat­ed human rights vio­la­tions includ­ing sex­u­al vio­lence against women and abuse of chil­dren.

    On Chad, Min­is­ters not­ed with sat­is­fac­tion the con­tin­u­a­tion of the polit­i­cal dia­logue in the frame­work of the Polit­i­cal Agree­ment of 13 August 2007 and sup­port­ed this effort to con­sol­i­date democ­ra­cy. They expressed their con­cern at the con­tin­u­a­tion of the human­i­tar­i­an crises in the east of Chad and north-east of the Cen­tral African Repub­lic.

    In this con­text Min­is­ters under­lined the impor­tance to com­plete deploy­ment of the Unit­ed Nations Mis­sion in Chad and CAR (MINURCAT) and wel­comed the con­tri­bu­tion of the EU mis­sion (EUFOR) for the sta­bil­i­sa­tion of this region. They not­ed with sat­is­fac­tion the adop­tion of UNSC Res­o­lu­tion 1834 of 24 Sep­tem­ber 2008 which renewed the man­date of MINURCAT and fore­sees the deploy­ment of a UN force to replace EUFOR.

    Zim­bab­we
    Min­is­ters not­ed with con­cern that the Zim­bab­wean par­ties have not yet suc­ceed­ed in form­ing a Gov­ern­ment of Nation­al Uni­ty, as called for by the Agree­ment of 15 Sep­tem­ber 2008, they signed in Harare, Zim­bab­we.

    In this regard, Min­is­ters took note of the call made by the Sum­mit of the Heads of State and Gov­ern­ment of the South­ern Africa Devel­op­ment Com­mu­ni­ty (SADC) in Sand­ton, South Africa, on 9 Novem­ber 2008, which, inter alia, called for the for­ma­tion, forth­with, of an inclu­sive Gov­ern­ment in Zim­bab­we. In this con­text Min­is­ters expressed their deep con­cern about the cur­rent stale­mate in the cre­ation of an inclu­sive gov­ern­ment with the agree­ment of all par­ties nec­es­sary to under­take eco­nom­ic and social reforms so urgent­ly expect­ed by the peo­ple.

    The EU and Africa expressed their wish that the Repub­lic of South Africa and SADC medi­a­tion suc­ceeds and called on the guar­an­tors of the glob­al polit­i­cal agree­ment to ensure the rapid and cred­i­ble imple­men­ta­tion of this agree­ment.

    Mau­ri­ta­nia
    Min­is­ters reit­er­at­ed their strong con­dem­na­tion of the coup d’état which took place in Mau­ri­ta­nia on 6 August 2008, as well as their deter­mi­na­tion to spare no effort towards the rapid restora­tion of con­sti­tu­tion­al order.

    In this regard, Min­is­ters wel­comed the out­come of the Con­sul­ta­tive Meet­ing on the Sit­u­a­tion in Mau­ri­ta­nia held on 10 Novem­ber 2008 in Addis Aba­ba, at the ini­tia­tive of the Chair­per­son of the Com­mis­sion. They stressed that any solu­tion to the cri­sis result­ing from the coup d’état should be based on the fol­low­ing key ele­ments: the uncon­di­tion­al release of Pres­i­dent Sidi Ould Cheikh Abdal­lahi; his par­tic­i­pa­tion in the res­o­lu­tion of the cri­sis in his capac­i­ty as the demo­c­ra­t­i­cal­ly elect­ed Pres­i­dent; the involve­ment of all stake­hold­ers, and the respect of the Mau­ri­tan­ian Con­sti­tu­tion and the inter­na­tion­al com­mit­ments of Mau­ri­ta­nia.

    Min­is­ters urged the Jun­ta to present solu­tions with­in the one month time lim­it in the frame­work of the con­sul­ta­tions of Arti­cle 96 of the Coto­nou Agree­ment. They agreed that the AU and the EU, in close col­lab­o­ra­tion with the oth­er part­ners, will review the sit­u­a­tion in light of the Mau­ri­tan­ian pro­pos­als to be sub­mit­ted, and of the con­sul­ta­tive meet­ing to be held on 21 Novem­ber 2008, called for by the AU. This would be the unique occa­sion to demon­strate the Junta’s active par­tic­i­pa­tion in con­struct­ing a way out of the cri­sis, thus avoid­ing sanc­tions imposed by the EU.

    Geor­gia
    The EU reit­er­at­ed its attach­ment to the inde­pen­dence, sov­er­eign­ty and ter­ri­to­r­i­al integri­ty of Geor­gia. The EU reaf­firmed its con­dem­na­tion of Russia’s deci­sion to rec­og­nize the inde­pen­dence of South-Osse­tia and Abk­hazia. The EU wel­comed the progress which has been made with­in the fore­seen time­frame in the imple­men­ta­tion of the agree­ments of 12 August 2008 and 8 Sep­tem­ber 2008, and par­tic­u­lar­ly not­ed the hold­ing of inter­na­tion­al dis­cus­sions stip­u­lat­ed in point 6 of the agree­ment of 12 August which start­ed in Gene­va on 15 Octo­ber 2008 and con­tin­ued on 18 Novem­ber 2008. The African side took note with inter­est and encour­aged Geor­gia and Rus­sia to find a peace­ful solu­tion to the con­flict.

    B. The Finan­cial Cri­sis
    Min­is­ters dis­cussed the cur­rent finan­cial cri­sis and its impact on the glob­al econ­o­my in gen­er­al, and on the economies of Africa and the EU in par­tic­u­lar. They not­ed with con­cern that the cri­sis is like­ly to have seri­ous neg­a­tive impacts on glob­al demand, export earn­ings, access to finance, for­eign direct invest­ment flows, migrant remit­tances and ODA flows. They not­ed that these devel­op­ments are like­ly to wors­en the macro­eco­nom­ic fun­da­men­tals of African economies; exac­er­bate the impact of the recent food price cri­sis, and reverse the attain­ment of the Mil­len­ni­um Devel­op­ment Goals.

    Min­is­ters agreed that inter­na­tion­al finan­cial sta­bil­i­ty is a Glob­al Pub­lic Good which requires a more effi­cient, coher­ent and ade­quate­ly reg­u­lat­ed inter­na­tion­al finan­cial sys­tem. In this regard, they wel­comed the var­i­ous high lev­el sum­mits held in var­i­ous parts of the world to mit­i­gate the poten­tial impact of the cri­sis, includ­ing the recent Meet­ing of African Min­is­ters of Finance and Plan­ning and Gov­er­nors of Cen­tral Banks, held in Tunis on 12 Novem­ber 2008, and the high lev­el meet­ing held by the EU.

    While regret­ting inad­e­quate African rep­re­sen­ta­tion in the recent G20 meet­ing in Wash­ing­ton, Min­is­ters wel­comed the out­come Dec­la­ra­tion doc­u­ment of the Sum­mit which calls for a com­pre­hen­sive reform of the Bret­ton Woods Insti­tu­tions and reaf­firms the devel­op­ment assis­tance com­mit­ments made and the impor­tance of achiev­ing the Mil­len­ni­um Devel­op­ment Goals. Min­is­ters called for a bet­ter African rep­re­sen­ta­tion in inter­na­tion­al efforts and fora to ensure that the inter­ests and needs of African coun­tries are duly tak­en into account.

    Min­is­ters there­fore wel­comed glob­al­ly coor­di­nat­ed efforts to review the finan­cial and mon­e­tary inter­na­tion­al archi­tec­ture and glob­al eco­nom­ic gov­er­nance. The Bret­ton Woods Insti­tu­tions should strength­en their analy­sis, pre­ven­tion and sup­port meth­ods for devel­op­ing coun­tries affect­ed by the inter­na­tion­al finan­cial crises, while involv­ing more close­ly eco­nom­ic and finan­cial region­al insti­tu­tions.

    They recalled one of the key objec­tives of the Joint Strat­e­gy to joint­ly pro­mote and sus­tain a sys­tem of effec­tive mul­ti­lat­er­al­ism and to address glob­al chal­lenges and com­mon con­cerns.

    Min­is­ters empha­sised that the finan­cial cri­sis must not under­mine the glob­al devel­op­ment agen­da, notably the imple­men­ta­tion of com­mit­ments made in Gle­nea­gles and with­in the Mon­ter­rey con­sen­sus, as well as those relat­ed to the achieve­ment of the MDGs. Min­is­ters called on devel­op­ment part­ners, includ­ing the EU, despite the glob­al finan­cial cri­sis to meet their ODA com­mit­ments which con­tin­ue to be one of the most impor­tant resources for the financ­ing of the devel­op­ment of African coun­tries. Min­is­ters encour­aged African gov­ern­ments to con­tin­ue imple­ment­ing macro­eco­nom­ic poli­cies and struc­tur­al reforms geared towards growth and pover­ty reduc­tion, while pro­tect­ing the most vul­ner­a­ble, also dur­ing the cur­rent dif­fi­cult cir­cum­stances. In this respect Min­is­ters stressed the impor­tance of joint­ly address­ing these issues in the con­text of the forth­com­ing Doha inter­na­tion­al con­fer­ence on devel­op­ment financ­ing and of the next G-20 meet­ing in April 2009.

    C. The Prin­ci­ple of Uni­ver­sal Juris­dic­tion
    Min­is­ters dis­cussed and under­lined the neces­si­ty to fight impuni­ty in the frame­work of the inter­na­tion­al law to ensure that indi­vid­u­als who com­mit grave offences such as war crimes and crimes against human­i­ty are brought to jus­tice. The African side stat­ed that there are abu­sive appli­ca­tions of the prin­ci­ple which could endan­ger inter­na­tion­al law and expressed con­cerns over it. The EU took note of the African con­cern notably as expressed at the AU sum­mit in Sharm el Sheik. The two par­ties recog­nised that the issue has neg­a­tive con­se­quences for the rela­tion­ship between the EU and the African side. Min­is­ters agreed to con­tin­ue dis­cus­sions on the issue and to set up a tech­ni­cal ad hoc expert group to clar­i­fy the respec­tive under­stand­ing on the African and EU side on the prin­ci­ple of uni­ver­sal juris­dic­tion, and to report to the next Min­is­te­r­i­al Troi­ka meet­ing, with a pre­lim­i­nary report to be sub­mit­ted before the end of Jan­u­ary 2009.

3. DATE AND VENUE OF THE 12TH MINISTERIAL TROIKA MEETING

Min­is­ters agreed to hold the 12th Min­is­te­r­i­al Meet­ing of the African and EU Troikas on 28 April 2009 in Lux­em­bourg. Hon. Mr. Bernard K. Mem­be Min­is­ter for For­eign Affairs and Inter­na­tion­al Coop­er­a­tion H.E. Mr. Bernard Kouch­n­er Min­is­ter for For­eign and Euro­pean Affairs For the African side For the EU side

Source: COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION