8 - 10 December 2013, Algiers, Algeria - The High Level Seminar entitled “Assisting Incoming African Members on the UN Security Council in Preparing to Address Peace and Security Issues on the Continent” took place in Algiers from the 8-10 December 2013 and was convened by the African Union Peace and Security Commission and UNITAR’s Peacekeeping Training Programme, and hosted by the government of Algeria. 

The event gathered representatives from Rwanda, the outgoing African state on the UN Security Council (UNSC), Chad and Nigeria, the two incoming African states on the Security Council, Gambia, the Chair of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union for the month of December 2013, and Algeria as the host government. The delegations were headed by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of these countries, with one exception, and included representatives from the Permanent Missions of Rwanda, Chad and Nigeria in Addis Ababa and New York, as well as from capital cities. The African Union’s Commissioner for Peace and Security presided over the seminar’s sessions, and AU Special Envoys and Representatives, AU and UN experts presented on the peace and security challenges facing Africa. 

The objective of the seminar was to lay a foundation for the coordination of the African members on the UNSC to ensure that African concerns and positions are raised effectively at the UNSC, particularly on issues of peace and security in Africa. The seminar also served to induct the newly-elected African members of the UNSC into the working methods of the AU Peace and Security Council (AUPSC) and those of the UNSC, and discussions ensued on the relations of the African Security Council members with both the AUPSC and the UNSC.

The outcomes and recommendations of the seminar were drafted into a report which shall be circulated to the embassies of all AU member states in Addis Ababa and New York, fed into the upcoming retreat of the AU Executive Council in January 2014 and discussed by the African Union Peace and Security Council. The participants agreed on the need to institutionalize the seminar as an annual event to take place each December.