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War tops talks as African leaders gather in Ethiopia for AU summit
ADDIS ABABA — Conflict and humanitarian crises rather than growing economies and development top the agenda for African leaders this week as they meet for a summit of the continental bloc.
War in the Central African Republic (CAR) and South Sudan are key priorities, Ethiopian Foreign Minister Tedros Adhanom said ahead of the two-day African Union (AU) meeting that opens on Thursday.
The controversial role on the continent of the International Criminal Court (ICC) is also expected to be addressed.
"The fact that these humanitarian tragedies are unfolding in the two countries at a time when we are talking about ‘African renaissance’ must be painful to all of us," Mr Tedros added, speaking at a ministerial-level meeting on Monday.
"Unless we find (an) urgent solution, the situation in these two countries will have serious implications for peace and security in the region, and indeed the whole continent," he added.
Ethiopia, hosting the 54-member meeting of the AU in Addis Ababa, is also the current head of the bloc’s rotating chair.
The meeting’s official theme is "Agriculture and food security", but nations will be bogged down yet again trying to resolve conflict in fellow member states.
South Sudan’s warring parties signed a fragile ceasefire last week, but clashes between government and rebels continue, with thousands killed and more than 800,000 forced from their homes in bloodshed that has now lasted for six weeks.
Peace talks led by the regional East African bloc Igad adjourned after last week’s ceasefire deal, with mediators calling for the AU to play a greater role in the peace process.
"One of the issues for the AU this week is to add some clarity to exactly what its role will be," said Phil Clark, a politics lecturer at London’s Soas University.
"Pressure might need to be coming from an organ within the AU," said Jason Mosley, from Britain’s Chatham House think-tank.
The unfolding humanitarian disaster in the CAR, where a 5,200-strong AU force is deployed alongside 1,600 French soldiers, will also dominate talks.
The CAR descended into chaos 10 months ago after rebels overthrew the government, sparking sectarian violence that has uprooted a million people out of a population of 4.6-million.
Peter J Pham, director of the Africa Centre at the Atlantic Council, said the AU’s slow response to the crisis in the CAR pointed to a deeper institutional weakness when it came to rapidly evolving conflicts.
"For all the talk — we’ve had it for well over a decade — about an African standby force, the fact is that when emergencies come up, it starts all over again, there is no standby force," he said, referring to the AU’s plans for an on-call peacekeeping force, which has yet to materialise.
"There’s very little concrete action being done," he added.
Mr Clark said the AU faced criticism in its response to crises, especially in South Sudan and the CAR.
"There’s a lot of concern at the moment that the AU isn’t showing sufficient leadership in resolving these types of conflicts," he said. "So I think it’s those issues that are going to loom large."
Heads of state will gather at the gleaming, Chinese-built AU headquarters on Thursday and Friday, which comes eight months after the bloc marked its 50th anniversary in May.
Leaders are also expected to focus on "Agenda 2063", a 50-year road map for the AU that has been a major preoccupation for the head of the its executive council, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
But Mr Mosley pointed out that while long-term planning and development schemes were important, the AU could not ignore ongoing conflict. He suggested recent rhetoric of a "rising continent" had glossed over major problems.
"The whole ‘Africa rising’ thing was a bit of a swing too far, away from ‘Africa is a continent that’s continuing in crisis’," said Mr Mosley, adding that development and peace and security issues should be tackled together.
Member states are also expected to discuss the AU’s relationship with the ICC, after a special summit on the topic last year. The AU has accused the court of unfairly targeting Africans and has said sitting heads of state should not be tried, including Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.
The one-year rotating chair of the AU, currently led by Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, will also be replaced. Mauritania’s Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz is tipped to take the post.
A bunch of fat African monkies….all they do is steal, kill, torture and destroy. They use colonialism and the west as an excuse for their failures. How come they don’t learn the great west civilization and good governance? Shame on you fat ass
@Mesfin : They are may be a group of corrupted people but It’s shame when your fellow creatures saying African monkies
what else is sad than a bunch of cruel animals that sabotage and destroy their own race for money and fame…lucky, I am not in charge…i wish i can line up and destroy them….enough is enough!!!
They will certainly have a good time in Addis
,and their so called Summit shall once again being a waste of Time .African Despots and Tyrants ,if you really want to be useful ,FEED your peoples and let them FREE . Afterall the resolution has already been made by the State Department influencing the UN Security Council .While African so called delegations and envoys remaining as usual VOICELESS .
THE SHAME OF AFRICAN LEADERSHIP DISPLAYED ON A GLOBAL PLATFORM!!!
African leaders sleeping in a UN Summit. They started dozing after discussion on developmental aid.
* When they were deliberating on energy and power, they were sleeping.
* When they were deliberating on economic development, they were sleeping.
* When they deliberated on food security, they were asleep.
* When they fixed interest rate on debtor’s (African) loans, they were asleep.
* When they deliberated on conflict resolution through dialogue they were already snoring.
They only woke up, to support motion for adjournment and signed the communique.
Of course!, they need rest, they worked tirelessly back home clamping down their opponents and critics.
They Spent the night strategising on the next move to subdue their opponents, embezzle more resources.
Back home, airports were closed 2 hours before their arrival, motor-ways were blocked 1 hour ahead, Armed Policemen stood guard 8 hours before arrival. Rented crowd clamoured under sun to cheer them up, WHAT HAVE THEY BROUGHT HOME?
You are quite right. We should gather these human garbages throw them from that tall building one by one. Just push them from the top of the AU building with dollar in their mouth and say EAT SHIT
Mesfin, by naming them as “…African monkies…", you are passing to them the nickname that whites racists use to humiliate you when they meet you in front of your local social welfare offices. Think twice how bumerang works before you use such mindless words and phrases.
Remember that one can get almost everything under sky with politeness and humiliation is a desperate act it should not necessarily help change things to make this world to be better place to leave in. People always tend to be aggressive and incline to humiliate when they exhaust or miss adequate arguments. Sorry that it’s an act of inferiority complex and unsatisfactory state of self-realization rooted from their own personal than external factors. Those external negative interactions are just the reflections of the above.
Hostile words used by you are not part of our culture. I am sorry for you for adopting such bad habit by picking form those very weak simple individuals of non African origins.
“There’s a lot of concern at the moment that the AU isn’t showing sufficient leadership in resolving these types of conflicts,”
An organization is only as good as the members it constitues. What do you expect from Ethiopian ” leaders” et al?
Again another Western media and their so-called lecturer trying to undermine the African Renaissance as usual. YES AFRICA IS RISING! !! Africa is in a better shape now than is was 2 or 3 decades ago. Africa has a better professional governance than before. More peaceful than before. Europeans have had their fair share of conflict and war and hunger in their long walk to prosperity and democracy.Refer to your own history books first . Some folks in the West still are having hard time accepting the rising of Africa. Yes We have still conflics in couple countries which are being resolved soon by Africans. But in no way can that undermine African Renaissance. The above article by AFP is another garbage and irrelevant article that’s bent on undermining Africans. With regard to ICC, since it’s inception the people prosecuted by the court are all Africans. This is no coincidence. They are attacking African leaders even leaders who are still in the office. ICC is an instrument to undermine African leaders. Now ICC must drop cases against His Excellency Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya and His Excellency Hassan AlBashir of Sudan.
Africa is rising!
All bad wishers in this posts are Eritreans.
They simply felt jealous of seeing all leaders with the new state of art being only in Addis Ababa….That’s all.
I remember these African pigheaded dictators came to Addis wearing their a very expensive closes ,ROLEX watch,perfumes , dollars they looted from their poor people and as usual ,they pass without control at Bole airport, more SHOPPING , champion,whisky, all sort of liquors, not to mention a weyanne run prostitutes to escort them to local weyanne own bars.. When the Meeting starts, all these pigs are intoxicated with drugs and alcohol. They do not even know what they sign. Some of them are illiterate they prefer to sign with their guns than a pen. A funny thing is they all have a golden pen. What is wrong with Pic pen? Do these pigs ever visit a hospital in their home land? No, they travel aboard for treatment with the money they stolen and get a better treatment. BURN THEM ALL A LIVE.
yene tesema, I am sorry if my words offended these fat rats. THEY RAPE AND DESTROY their own ppl….FUCK them and i Hope they burn in hell. AFRICA is a MODEL for disaster in the world and it is because of these leaders/dictators….trigger happy, fat, ugly, low life of human….destroy these if u want to have any hope of the future. You are concerned about what white ppl call you, but you ignored the destruction they brought…..sad ass creatures, AIDS, famine, rape, and fly is what we are known for::((((
What a joke uncle tom house Niger calling their own kind leader as monkeys. Anyway to remind your toothless master Africa is no longer the dark or the lost continent.
tell them Senait…..Africa the so called rich continent with resource is the world leader in every disaster we can name….and Tesfay, stop mumbling….criticizing and calling out fat ass pigs who destroy their nation and ppl has nothing to do eritrea…you seemed to have a hung up bro….wake up and smell the chaos in that continent rather than blaming eritrea for all your dictators short coming…
Mesfun, Please stop insulting monkeies
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