Rwanda will chair the African Union Peace and Security Council (PSC) for the month of May.
The PSC is the standing organ of the AU for the prevention, management and resolution of conflicts and is a key element of the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA), which is the umbrella term for the main AU mechanisms for promoting peace, security and stability on the continent.
For the month of May, the AU’s decision-making body responsible for the maintenance of continental peace and security will be presided over by Rwanda’s Permanent Representative to the AU, Hope Tumukunde Gasatura, according to a statement.
The Rwandan embassy in Ethiopia said in the statement that key peace and security priorities have been identified to feature on the programme of the PSC during the month.
“Some of the peace and security priorities we have identified this month include: financing Africa’s peace through the AU Peace Fund; protection of civilians in conflict areas by encouraging more African countries to endorse the Kigali Principles on Protection of Civilians in conflict situations; addressing security impediments to free movement of people; as well as promoting and reporting the role of women in peace and security in Africa,” Tumukunde is quoted saying.
It is also noted that Rwanda will also preside over a ministerial session on the security situation in the Sahel region, a vast area located in the northern part of Africa stretching from the Red Sea to the Atlantic Ocean covering an area of more than 1,178,000 square miles.
The objective, as noted, is to ensure that there is harmonization and ownership of initiatives by African countries in the Sahel region. The session will also discuss security and migration on the continent.
The PSC is a vital organ of the AU mandated to take decisions on matters of peace and security on the continent. Last month, it designated April 7 as the AU day of Commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.
Each member of the Council holds the chairmanship on rotational basis for the month. Rwanda will take over from Nigeria, which chaired the PSC in April.
Rwanda was re-elected for another two years to the PSC in January 2018.