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Communique of the Thirteenth Meeting of the Peace and Security Council
July 27, 2004

African Union (Addis Ababa)

July 27, 2004
Posted to the web July 27, 2004

Peace and Security Council
Addis Ababa

The Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU), at its thirteenth meeting, held on 27 July 2004, adopted the following communiqué on the crisis in the Darfur region of the Sudan:


1. Reiterates its deep concern over the grave situation that still prevails in the Darfur region of the Sudan, in particular the continued attacks by the Janjaweed militia against the civilian population, as well as other human rights abuses and the humanitarian crisis;

2. Underlines the urgent need to implement decision AU/Dec.54(III) on Darfur, adopted by the 3rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the AU, held in Addis Ababa, from 6 to 8 July 2004, and which provides a framework for addressing the crisis. In this respect, Council stresses the urgent need for the Government of the Sudan (GoS) to expeditiously implement its commitment to neutralize and disarm the Janjaweed militia and other armed groups and to bring to justice the perpetrators of human rights abuses. Council also reiterates the need for the rebel forces to be cantoned at mutually agreed sites;

3. Stresses the need for the AU to continue to lead the efforts to resolve the crisis in Darfur and, in this respect, welcomes the support extended by the international community, including the UN Security Council. Council calls on the latter and all the AU partners to continue to support these efforts, including financial and logistical assistance to sustain the AU-led mission deployed in Darfur and to enhance its effectiveness;

4. Calls upon all parties, namely the GoS, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and the Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SLM/A), to scrupulously comply with the Humanitarian Ceasefire Agreement of 8 April 2004 and to extend full cooperation to the Ceasefire Commission (CFC) and the military observers deployed in Darfur;

5. Welcomes the convening in Addis Ababa, on 15 July 2004, of a meeting between the parties and, in this respect, regrets that the JEM and the SLM/A leadership failed to attend the talks. Council stresses the need for a speedy resumption of the dialogue and calls on the parties to be represented at the highest level at the next round of the political talks, with a clear mandate, and to negotiate in good faith with the view to achieving a lasting solution to the Darfur conflict;

6. Encourages the Chairperson of the Commission and his Special Envoy for Darfur, Hamid El Gabid, to actively pursue their consultations with the parties to expedite the resumption and successful convening of the political dialogue. In this respect, Council urges the parties to agree, as soon as possible, on a general framework for the pursuit of the dialogue, including the agenda of the discussions and their venue;

7. Appeals to all Member States to fully back the ongoing efforts and, in this respect, welcomes the efforts of the Chairman of the AU, President Olusegun Obasanjo, in support of the search for a lasting solution to the conflict in Darfur;

8. Takes note of the progress made in the deployment of the military observers and the steps taken towards the deployment of the Protection Force, provided for by the Agreement of 28 May 2004 on the Establishment of the CFC and the Deployment of Military Observers, and whose mandate, as per the understanding reached during the 3rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly, includes the protection, within the capacity of the Force, of the civilian population. Council welcomes the decision by Nigeria and Rwanda to contribute troops for the Protection Force;

9. Requests the Chairperson of the Commission to prepare and submit to it, for consideration, a comprehensive plan on how best to enhance the effectiveness of the AU Mission on the ground, including the possibility of transforming the said Mission into a full-fledged peacekeeping mission, with the requisite mandate and size, to ensure the effective implementation of the Ceasefire Agreement, with particular emphasis on the disarmament and the neutralization of the Janjaweed militia, the protection of the civilian population and the facilitation of the delivery of the humanitarian assistance;

10. Calls upon the international community at large, including AU Member States that are in a position to do so, to provide the much-needed humanitarian assistance to the civilian population affected by the crisis. Council further encourages African humanitarian NGOs to contribute to the ongoing efforts and requests the Commission to extend full support to them;

11. Requests the Commission to submit to it a comprehensive assessment of the situation in Darfur, including the steps taken to disarm and neutralize the Janjaweed militia, to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian assistance, to bring to justice the perpetrators of human rights violations, as well as the violations of the ceasefire and the status of the political dialogue;

12. Decides to remain seized of the matter and requests the Commission to report regularly on the situation, including the simultaneous efforts to be deployed to find a lasting solution to the conflict


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