Ensuring the Independence, Neutrality and Impartiality of the AU PSC Field Mission to Burundi
Published: 1 Jun 2017
To all Members of the African Union Peace and Security Council
RE: URGENT: Ensuring the Independence, Neutrality and Impartiality of the AU PSC Field Mission to Burundi
Your Excellencies, as Burundian and African civil society organisations, we welcome news that the Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU PSC) will conduct a field mission to the Republic of Burundi to assess the situation later this month. This is a timely and urgently needed mission ahead of the 27th African Union Summit where Council will examine the situation in Burundi. We also welcome the steady efforts of the Facilitator of the East African Community-led mediation, President Benjamin Mkapa, to engage all Burundian stakeholders in a peaceful and inclusive resolution to the Burundi crisis and the continued support of the Council for this crucial process.
Your Excellencies, we urge Council to strongly consider the conduct of the field mission in a manner that respects the principles of independence, neutrality and impartiality as stipulated in the Communique of the AU PSC at its 557th meeting held on 13 November 2015. In this regard, we believe that this will not be the case if the mission is led by Burundi in their capacity as the Chair of the African Union Peace and Security Council for the month of June 2016. Section 9 of Article 8 of the Protocol Relating to the Establishment of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union also states that any Member of the Peace and Security Council which is party to a conflict or a situation under consideration by the Peace and Security Council shall not participate either in the discussion or in the decision making process relating to that conflict or situation.