News / Africa

AU Seeks Regional Response to Conflicts

Chairman Jean Ping addresses participants of the opening session of the African Union Peace and Security council meeting in Addis Ababa, July 14, 2012.Chairman Jean Ping addresses participants of the opening session of the African Union Peace and Security council meeting in Addis Ababa, July 14, 2012.
x
Chairman Jean Ping addresses participants of the opening session of the African Union Peace and Security council meeting in Addis Ababa, July 14, 2012.
Chairman Jean Ping addresses participants of the opening session of the African Union Peace and Security council meeting in Addis Ababa, July 14, 2012.
Gabe Joselow
ADDIS ABABA — An African Union summit opened in Addis Ababa Sunday with calls for the AU to play a more active role in settling regional conflicts. The AU plans to support military interventions in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo and Mali.

African Union Commission chairman Jean Ping opened the summit with a call for African solutions to African problems.

“Indeed the solutions to African problems are found on the continent and nowhere else,” he said. “Coherent leadership is needed to carry out African initiatives, and it is important for all to join together to give concrete form to our vision.”

While the theme of the 19th annual AU summit is promoting intra-African trade, security issues have so far dominated much of the discussions.

During his opening remarks, Ping said the AU may contribute to a regional force in the Democratic Republic of Congo to confront armed groups.  Rebel soldiers, known as M23, have been battling the Congolese army in eastern Congo since April.

On Saturday, the AU Peace and Security Council affirmed its support for West African nations to prepare a military intervention in northern Mali, where Islamist militants have seized control of several towns in the wake of a political rebellion.

There have been signs of progress in AU-mediated talks between Sudan and South Sudan. The leaders of both countries met for a closed door meeting late Saturday ahead of the summit.

The two countries resumed negotiations this week to settle the disputes left unresolved following their separation last year.

Meantime, all eyes are watching a close election contest for the next chairperson of the AU Commission.

Incumbent chairman Ping is competing against South African Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.

The candidates ran against each other at the last summit in January, but neither won enough votes to win the post, and Ping retained the chairmanship.

Dlamini-Zuma has maintained strong support from southern members, while Ping, from Gabon, enjoys support from the west.

Speaking to reporters Sunday, Dlamini-Zuma denied the vote was pitting the regions against each other.

“I don't think any election should be seen as divisive, because after the election whoever wins here today, we should all support,” said Dlamini-Zuma.

Analysts say the vote is likely to result in a similar outcome to January, and another stalemate is a strong possibility.

You May Like

How to Safeguard Your Mobile Privacy

As the digital world becomes more mobile, so too do concerns about eroding privacy and increased hacking More

'Desert Dancer' Chronicles Iranian Underground Dance Troupe

Film by Richard Raymond is based on true story of Afshin Ghaffarian and his friends More

Researcher: Obesity Poses Complex Problem

Professor at Symposium on Obesity, Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome says problem involves more than calorie intake, warns of worldwide health impact More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Optimist from: Everywhere
July 16, 2012 11:11 AM
Another nonsense. First remove all the twenty years old dictators ruining their country's chance to enjoy democratic governance and respect for the rule of law. Then talk about hunger and the constant starvation, then economic integration, finally security matters.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thoughti
X
George Putic
May 26, 2015 9:26 PM
Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video US-led Coalition Gives Some Weapons to Iraqi Troops

In a video released Tuesday from the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, Iraqi forces and U.S.-led coalition troops survey a cache of weapons supplied to help Iraq liberate Mosul from Islamic State group. According to a statement provided with the video, the ministry and the U.S.-led coaltion troops have started ''supplying the 16th army division with medium and light weapons in preparation to liberate Mosul and nearby areas from Da'esh (Arabic acronym for Islamic State group).''
Video

Video Amnesty International: 'Overwhelming Evidence' of War Crimes in Ukraine

Human rights group Amnesty International says there is overwhelming evidence of ongoing war crimes in Ukraine, despite a tentative cease-fire with pro-Russian rebels. Researchers interviewed more than 30 prisoners from both sides of the conflict and all but one said they were tortured. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Washington Parade Honors Those Killed Serving in US Military

Every year, on the last Monday in the month of May, millions of Americans honor the memories of those killed while serving in the armed forces. Memorial Day is a tradition that dates back to the 19th Century. While many people celebrate the federal holiday with a barbecue and a day off from work, for those who’ve served in the military, it’s a special day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Arash Arabasadi reports for VOA from Washington.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.

VOA Blogs