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Greg Dorey


Part of UK in Ethiopia

6th November 2013

G8++ African Clearing House

Today, I participated in the 2013 Africa Clearing House (ACH) meeting at the Headquarters of the African Union (AU) here in Addis. The UK co-hosted the event with the AU as part of our G8 Presidency.

The ACH began in 2004 and aims to “provide a multi-lateral forum to exchange information on security assistance and cooperation programs for the African continent; to establish the ACH as the premier mechanism for continued information exchange, cooperation and future collaboration”. The objective of today’s meeting is to maximise coherence and impact by better coordinating donors’ and partners’ engagement on African peace support operations with the AU Commission and the Regional Economic Communities (RECs). It brings together representatives of the G8 (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, UK and USA), who will be joined by Australia, Belgium, Brazil, China, Denmark, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain and Sweden. The European Union and United Nations are also participating.

The AU has increasingly become a prominent player in Africa on a range of issues from peace and security to governance to trade; and outside the continent the AU’s voice – as represented through the AU Commission – is important in adding legitimacy to international actions in Africa, including through its representational role at the G8 and G20.

2013 has been an important year for African peace and security. The AU PSC has been confronted by challenges in many parts of the continent, and has undertaken interventions in, for example, the Central African Republic, Mali and Somalia. The AU has shown its capacity to create early warning systems; work for conflict prevention; and deliver effective intervention and mediation if conflict does occur. UK aligns itself with AU’s commitment to secure a peaceful future for the continent and with the aspiration for an end to all conflicts by 2020. Mechanisms like the ACH can be very useful in helping to make that vision real.