22 March 2015, Mont Pelèrin, Switzerland - The African Union Peace and Security Commission (AU Commission) and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to formalize their long and outstanding cooperation to promote peace and security on the continent. These two Institutions have indeed a lot in common as regards to their respective missions and goals. The MoU was signed by the Commissioner for Peace and Security, Ambassador Smail Chergui, AU Commissioner for Peace and Security and Mrs Sally Fegan-Wyles, UNITAR Executive Director in the presence of the H.E. Mr Jan Eliasson, UN Deputy Secretary General and H.E Mr Yves Rossier, State Secretary of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland.
The signed MoU is built on the shared ultimate goal to promote peace, security and stability on the African continent, in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations, the Constitutive Act of the African Union and other relevant international and regional instruments and aims to provide a cooperative framework within which the AU and UNITAR may develop and implement joint activities to be mutually agreed upon; to utilize and leverage their existing resources and facilities for mutual benefit and to develop such cooperation for fostering “peaceful, just and resilient societies” in Africa.
Initial opportunities for cooperation within the framework of this MoU will include and not limited to:
- Preparing and organizing the annual High Level Seminar aimed at assisting African countries on the UN Security Council to address peace and security issues, and to promote AU positions in the Security Council;
- Designing, developing and delivering training and capacity building activities (e.g. curricula, conferences, workshops and seminars), including executive need/demand-based training for senior officials from the African Union and its member states, that produce results in accordance with outcomes agreed upon by the Parties; and
- Building synergies with relevant African Union Organs and other entities affiliated to the African Union in the area of training and research related to peace and security.
In addition to the appreciations from H.E. Mr Jan Eliasson and H.E Mr Yves Rossier, this historical and landmark step was welcomed by all participants to the 11th Seminar for Special and Personal Representatives of the UN Secretary General.
Photo (from the left): H.E. Mr Yves Rossier, Mrs. Sally Fegan-Wyles, Ambassador Smail Chergui, H.E. Mr Jan Eliasson