Enhancing Peace and Security in the Eastern Africa Region

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EASF Marks African Border Day

On the occasion of African Border Day, the Director of EASF Secretariat, Dr Abdillahi Omar Bouh, and the entire EASF fraternity, join the rest of the world in recognizing the importance of Borders on the African continent.

The 2017 African Border Day is celebrated under the theme “Harnessing the Demographic Dividends through investments in Youth.”   This is in recognition of the significance of youth participation in prevention of conflict and promotion of border cooperation, which is also enshrined in the African Union theme of 2017, "Harnessing the demographic dividend through investment in youth."

Dr Bouh noted the importance of this Day especially for EASF being one of the key actors in matters of peace and security on the continent of Africa. “The Day presents a perfect opportunity for EASF to reflect on its mandate of enhancing peace and security in the Eastern Africa region, as border conflict continue to pose considerable challenges on the entire continent,” he said.

Management of cross-border conflicts through dialogue forms part of the AU ambitions contained in Agenda 2063. The Agenda also promotes sharing of resources across borders, promotion of peaceful dispute resolutions and silencing the gun by 2020.  This calls for urgent and robust measures to address the root causes of border conflict and to work towards prevention, while at the same time facilitating the process of resolving the disputes.

The African Border Day was espoused after the Second Conference of Ministers in charge of Border issues adopted the Declaration on the AU Border Programme (AUBP) in March 2010, as a day to popularize the importance of the AUBP in promoting peace, regional and continental integration in Africa in order to  prevent conflicts. The mission of the AUBP is to address the persistence of lack of delimitation and demarcation of African boundaries that gives rise to ‘undefined zones’, and to develop cross-border initiatives among States.  It is also used to sensitize Member States, African border populations, Regional Economic Communities (RECs), civil societies and academics on border issues.  This was followed by the first celebration of the African Border Day in June 2011.

The Eastern Africa Standby Force is a regional organization whose mandate is to enhance peace and security in the Eastern Africa region.  It is one of the five regional multidimensional Forces of the African Standby Force (ASF) consisting of Military, Police and Civilian components.  EASF was established as a regional mechanism to provide capability for rapid deployment of forces to carry out preventive deployment, rapid intervention, peace support/stability operations and peace enforcement.

EASF has ten active Member States, namely Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, the Sudan and Uganda.

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