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Adopted by the Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU) at its 1100th meeting held on 15 August 2022 on Sanctions and Enforcement Capacities: Deterrence Against Unconstitutional Changes of Government.

The Peace and Security Council,


Deeply concerned about democratic reversals and threats facing constitutionalism in the Continent, particularly the new wave of unconstitutional changes of government, which threatens to impede the realization of all aspirations of the AU Agenda 2063; United Nations (UN) Agenda 2030 and the successful implementation of the AU Master Roadmap of Practical Steps for Silencing the Guns in Africa by 2030;
Determined to effectively prevent future unconstitutional changes of government in the Continent, among others, by ensuring the commitment of all Member States to respect and fully comply with all relevant AU normative instruments, in particular, the Constitutive Act of the African Union;
Further committed to effectively silence the guns in Africa by the year 2030, in order to create the necessary conditions for the realization of Agenda 2063 and the overall AU Vision of an integrated, peaceful and prosperous Continent, as well as UN Agenda 2030;
Recalling the Assembly Decision and Declaration on Terrorism and Unconstitutional Chances of Government, adopted by the 16th Extraordinary Session of the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government, held on 28 May 2022 in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea; and the Accra Declaration on Unconstitutional Changes of Government resulting from the Reflection Forum held from 15 to 17 March 2022 in Accra, Ghana, and adopted by the 16th Extraordinary Session of the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea ;
Noting the opening remarks by H.E. Jainaba Jagne, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Republic of The Gambia to the AU, as Chairperson of the PSC for the month of August 2022, and the statement by the AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, H.E. Bankole Adeoye; and presentations received from the representatives ECCAS on behalf of RECs/RMs, the United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU) and the Institute for Security Studies (ISS); and
Acting under Article 7 of its Protocol, the Peace and Security Council:
Commends the commitment and efforts of the Member States and the AU Commission on the entrenchment of democratic governance through the promotion of shared values and norms;


1. Reiterates the call for the universalization of the signature, ratification and domestication by the Member States, of all AU legal instruments on democratic governance, elections, and respect for human rights and rule of law, particularly the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance;
2. Reaffirms its condemnation of the recent upsurge in unconstitutional changes of government in Africa as manifested by the unprecedented suspension of four (4) Member States from the activities of the AU;
3. Notes with concern the challenges facing the implementation of AU sanctions regime against unconstitutional changes of government, including lack of coordination between the AU and the RECs/RMs, partners as well as the actions of external actors and, in this regard, underlines the importance of enhanced coordination between the AU and RECs/RMs, including within the framework of the newly launched Inter-Regional Knowledge Exchange (I-RECKE) Platform in order to ensure effective implementation of AU sanctions;
4. Underscores the need to improve coordination of efforts to achieve wider buy-in of AU sanctions by other international actors, as well as to ensure synergies between AU sanctions and sanctions imposed by similar intergovernmental organizations, particularly the RECs and UN;
5. Calls for the full operationalization of the PSC Sanction Committee and the development of the requisite technical capacities to ensure its effectiveness, including the holding of appropriate capacity-building training programmes for the Sub-Committee in line with the Decision of the May 2022 16th Extraordinary Session of the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea and, in this regard, directs the Committee of Experts to urgently develop the Terms of Reference (ToRs) for the PSC Sub-Committee on Sanctions;
6. Equally directs the Commission to put in place a solid sanctions infrastructure using, the available resources in the Political Affairs, Peace and Security Department that will effectively support the work of the PSC Sub-Committee on Sanctions, as well as a monitoring and evaluation group, to assess the implementation of the sanctions imposed against the Member States;
7. Reiterates its call for the full implementation of the commitments of the Accra Declaration on Unconstitutional Changes of Government and the Assembly Decision and Declaration on Terrorism and Unconstitutional Chances of Government;
8. Underlines the importance of refining existing sanctions pronouncements into consistent frameworks that are aligned with the current evolution of the challenges they are meant to address; in this regard, requests the Commission, in collaboration with the UN stakeholders and relevant African research institutions and think tanks including the African Members of the UN Security Council (A3) and UN Security Council Permanent Members to explore and to develop an effective collaborative mechanism for the strengthening of the AU sanctions regime and providing appropriate technical capacities to the PSC Committee of Experts and the Military Staff Committee;
9. Expresses the essence for sanctions to be smartly targeted to the concerned parties and avoid precipitating unnecessary hardships on the citizenry of concerned countries; while renewing the call for a new strategic approach that will simultaneously employ mediation and peace-building to prevent and resolve conflicts;
10. Recalls and reiterates Resolution [Assembly/au/Res.1 (XXXV)] on the Impact of Sanctions and Unilateral Coercive Measures on African Union Member States, which was adopted by the 35th Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly, held from 5 to 6 February 2022, in Addis Ababa; strongly condemns such sanctions and coercive measures that are imposed without prior consultations with the AU, and stresses that unilateral sanctions and coercive measures are discouraged under international law, international humanitarian law, the UN Charter, Constitutive Act of the African Union and the norms and principles governing the peaceful resolution of disputes between and among states;
11. Requests the Commission to regularly brief the Council on this matter; and
12. Decides to actively remain seized of the matter.

Posted by PSC Secretariat

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