Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - On the occasion of the African Union’s Third Post Conflict Reconstruction and Development (PCRD) Awareness Week and within the context of Egypt’s Championship of PCRD, the Cairo International Center for Conflict Resolution Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding (CCCPA), in its capacity as the Secretariat of the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development, organized an expert workshop titled: “The Operationalization of the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus in Africa: State of Play and the Way Forward”, in partnership with the African Union (AU) Commission -Political Affairs, Peace and Security (PAPS) Department, and the African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD), on 30 November - 1 December 2023 at the AU Headquarters.

This workshop comes in the lead up to the Fourth Edition of the Aswan Forum, titled: “Africa in a Changing World: Reinvisioning Peace, Security and Development”, tentatively scheduled to be held during the second quarter of 2024. It brought together representatives from national governments, international and regional institutions, humanitarian actors, financial and development institutions, as well as civil society organizations, and think tanks for a forward-looking discussion to advance the operationalization of the HDP nexus, as part of more integrated approaches to tackle peace and development challenges and in line with the Revised AU PCRD Policy Framework.

Moreover, the workshop focused in particular on the imperative of bridging the gap between policy and practice through greater country leadership and ownership, and more innovative and targeted partnerships geared towards implementing concrete projects at the regional and national level.

H.E Mohamed Gad, Ambassador of the Arab Republic of Egypt to Ethiopia and Permanent Representative to the African Union and UNECA, emphasized that “as we gather during this PCRD Awareness Week, let us be reminded that the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus is not just a framework; it is the intricate tapestry that weaves together the threads of humanity, resilience, and progress. In addressing the challenges of peacebuilding, conflict resolution, and development, we find the nexus to be the compass guiding us toward a future where our actions echo a commitment to lasting, positive change for the people of Africa.”

In his remarks, Ambassador William Azumah Awinador-Kanyirige, Senior Governance and Peacebuilding Advisor, Office of the Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, at the African Union Commission stated that: “We are hoping that there will be more energy for action rather than talks. The many success stories in Africa show that we already have the capacity and know-how in our continent, but the key is looking inwards for best practices and ownership, and engaging in strategic partnerships to take forward concrete action.”

On his part, Ambassador Ahmed Abdel-Latif, Director General of CCCPA and Executive Director of the Aswan Forum, highlighted that “the operationalization of the HDPN has been a key priority of the Aswan Forum since its launch in 2019, during Egypt’s Chairmanship of the AU. He recalled the Aswan Conclusions which expressed the need to “accelerate the adoption of an integrated and coordinated approach across the HDP nexus —both within and among national governments and organizations— to effectively address the multi-faceted and complex drivers of violence and armed conflict.” Ambassador Abdel-Latif thus underscored that “as the world continues to grapple with a myriad of cascading and intertwined crises, there is an even bigger urge to push forward the nexus approach within PCRD efforts in the continent, which will be a main feature of the upcoming edition of the Aswan Forum”.

Throughout the workshop, speakers outlined operational challenges and lessons learned when applying the nexus approach, based on experiences from the field. They highlighted the imperative of achieving complementarity between various actors, by forging effective partnerships, while developing a strengthened toolbox that advances more holistic responses to the myriad of intertwined peace and security challenges across Africa.

Participants wholeheartedly expressed their unequivocal support for the Aswan Forum, recognizing it as a distinctive platform on the continent dedicated to advancing the nexus between peace, security, humanitarian efforts, governance, and development in Africa. They also extended their sincere congratulations to CCCPA, commending its exemplary leadership and unwavering commitment to seeking tangible and holistic solutions to the complex security and development challenges that prevail on the continent.

Building on the workshop’s rich discussions, the Aswan Forum Secretariat will prepare a Chair’s Summary capturing the key findings and recommendations, which will then feed into the preparation of the Fourth Edition of the Aswan Forum.

The workshop was conducted with the generous support of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) as a supporting partner of the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development, through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Posted by Limi Mohammed

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