|African Unification Front
|AUF POLICY ON TERRORISM
DECEMBER 18, 2001
The draft of this document is published by the AUF with an invitation to the public to comment thereon. The draft incorporates the AUF General Secretary’s decisions regarding proposals and submissions from members of the AUF Secretariat.
This document draws extensively on the AUF Mission Statement. It is materially consistent with, and incorporates the aims and aspirations of the AUF, the values of Pan-Africanism, and the directives of the Constitutive Act of the African Union.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1.1 Strategic Importance of the African Union
1.2 Common Vision Among Africans
1.3 The AUF and its Moral Obligation
1.4 Increased Potential for Conflict Resolution
1.5 Addressing Causes of Terrorism
1.6 The African Union as the Instrument of Peace
1.7 Implications of Anti-Terror Policies
2: Aim and Scope
2.1 Parameters and Process of Policy Formation
2.2 Organizational Conformity to International Aims
2.3 Long-Term & Broad Policy Framework
3.1 Consultation & Reflection of Consensus
3.2 Common Concerns & Public Awareness
3.3 Consideration of Anti-Terrorism Policy
4: African Response to International Terrorism
4.1 Central Organ on Conflict Resolution
4.2 African Finance Ministers
4.3 Dakar Summit on Terrorism
4.4 Algiers Convention on Terrorism
4.5 International Law Considerations for Africa
4.6 Terrorism as a Strategic Issue
4.7 The Importance of Security
4.8 Objectives of African Security Policies
4.9 Objectives of Anti-Terrorism Policy
4.10 Threat Assessment
4.11 Related Priorities
4.12 Mobilization of Public Support
4.13 Expanded Role for the African Union
5: Anti-Terrorism Considerations
5.1 The Theme of Policy
5.2 The Principles of Anti-Terrorism
5.3 Equal Treatment for Africans
5.3 Dissenting Community Concerns
6: The Role of the AUF
6.1 Obligations Towards the African Union
6.2 Legal and Operational Parameters
6.3 Transparency & Public Access
6.4 Promotion of Tolerance & Equality
6.5 Obligations Under International Law
6.6 Internal Consistency of AUF Policies
6.7 UN Conventions on Terrorism
6.8 Regional Anti-Terrorist Conventions
6.9 Equitable Implementation of Policies
The African Unification Front (AUF) is an international network that supports and strengthens the integration of Africa, by sharing and communicating strategies, bringing visibility to the African Union, and using its resources and influence to organize and orient political forces in African and around the world for the purpose of actively promoting African unity.
The AUF is a historic and global organization that is working to consolidate Africa into a unified political, social, and economic entity, by, among other things, promoting high standards within the governance structures of the African Union, and engaging the broad masses of Africans in the process of integration. The AUF was formed in October 1996. The Front has hundreds of thousands of supporters in the African Union and around the world who work to stimulate, establish and advance the cause of African sovereignty, freedom and unity.
This, the AUF Draft Policy on Terrorism reflects a consensus on anti-terrorism policy within Pan-African circles. The draft policy is the culmination of a process of consultation within the AUF leadership structures and incorporates the spirit of all relevant African and international treaties and protocols relating to terrorism, including the OAU Convention on Preventing and Combating of Terrorism. The draft reflects the concerns of the AUF, which are in alignment with the anti-terrorist attitudes of Africans in Africa and in Diaspora.
AUF General Secretary
December 18, 2001
1.1 This Draft has been prepared in the spirit of the new unification era in Africa. It acknowledges, as its point of departure, the profound political and strategic consequences of the formation of the African Union.
1.2 Following the formation of the African Union in July 2001, Africa has a common vision of the future. Africa has the Constitutive Act of the African Union that enshrines fundamental human rights, and emphasizes the responsibility of common people in determining the course of integration in Africa.
1.3 The AUF has moral and political obligation, backed by internationally recognized processes and methods of organization, in contributing to the efforts to defeat terrorism.
1.4 The potential for resolution of conflict in Africa has increased substantially as people become accustomed to the talking about Africa in common terms of unity, and easier recourse to International Criminal Tribunals, as more Africans participate in enforcing peace accords, and in formulating international instruments of conflict resolution.
1.5 In this regard, the African Union has prioritized the daunting task of addressing poverty and the socio-economic inequalities resulting from the international system, thereby committing to resolve the fundamental causes of the despair that lead to acts of terror. The New Initiative for Africa, as well as other collective African positions at the GATT, on relations with the EU and the UN, and other such initiatives, are the paramount instruments of policy all across the African Union. It is encouraging the G8 has agreed to focus on the efforts of the African Union in its meeting at Kanaskis. It also important that in 2001 the WB and the IMF, CIDA the UN Assembly, and the UN Security Council and other international organizations paid positive attention to Africa.
1.6 The African Union is the greatest instrument for peace, conflict resolution and unity in Africa. While the potential for instability and conflict remains, the salient fact is that it is no longer acceptable to plan and organize war, or acts of terror against neighboring states, or against communities in the African Union.
1.7 The AUF Draft Policy on Terrorism addresses the implications of these momentous developments for Anti-Terror efforts in the African Union. It also important to keep in mind that Africa’s political systems need to evolve toward full participation by all sections of society.
2: Aim and scope
2.1 The Draft presents the policy of the African Unification Front relating to Terrorism following a process of consultation within the leadership structures of the AUF, and close study of the concerns of Pan African organizations over issues raised by the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York city in the United States of America. This Draft Policy Paper is also meant to build consensus and confidence in the African responses to the terrorist violence in Africa and around the world.
2.2 This paper also aims to show how AUF organizational structures, conform with all aspects of the African Union, and Africa’s historic relations particularly with international norms. Accordingly, the Draft Policy considers the overarching challenge of transforming anti-terror policy and resources in the context of the Constitutive Act of the African Union, and international norms on combating terrorism. The AUF draft policy considers African relations with the rest of the world, with reference to relevant international agreements and treaties on: conflict prevention; transparency and freedom of information; funding of legitimate and ethical dissent that conforms the Union Act and the Banjul Protocol; civic education and conflict resolution; and the responsibilities of the African Union and the governments of the constitutive republics of the African Union towards international anti-terrorist efforts.
2.3 The AUF Draft Policy on Terrorism considers: the external and internal strategic environment and the importance of promoting anti-terrorist norms in the African Union; Human resource issues relating to integration of the African Union; equal opportunity, and non-discrimination in addressing terrorism; Economic, social and political considerations in the process of addressing terrorism.
3.1 The African Unification Front is committed to on-going consultation with the African Union’s Secretariat and institutions, African political parties, interest groups, Non-Governmental Organizations, citizens and all other stake holders, in order to forge a consensus on the organization of anti-terrorist efforts and other matters relating to both domestic and international conflict. The AUF leadership and membership itself forms a consensus group whose interests are broadly reflective of the need to address human security concerns in Africa and around the world.
3.2 A common concern in addressing terrorism is the lack of public awareness of the various treaties and documents that are now the property of the African Union, such as the OAU Convention on Preventing and Combating Terrorism and the Dakar Declaration Against Terrorism. The matter of limited public awareness of these documents has to be addressed as part of the process of combating terrorism in Africa and around the world.
3.3 The AUF Draft Policy on Terrorism seeks to establish a broad policy framework and the main principles of addressing terrorism in the African Union. The AUF Draft Policy on Terrorism provides the basis for a plan on combating Terrorism in Africa, and elaborates on this framework in detail. The plan entails comprehensive long-range planning on such matters as doctrine, posture, organizational structures, and resources.
4: African Response to Terrorism
4.1 Immediately following the September 11, 2001 destruction on the World Trade Center in New York, the seventy-sixth ordinary session of the Central Organ of the OAU/AU Mechanism for Conflict Prevention, Management and Resolution condemned unequivocally the horrific terrorist attacks "that have caused enormous loss of human life and destruction in New York, Washington DC and Pennsylvania". "The central organ stresses the urgent need to bring to justice the perpetrators and sponsors of these terrorist attacks and calls on the international community to work in a more coordinated and determined manner to prevent and combat terrorism."
4.2 On 17th October 2001 African finance ministers held a conference in Amsterdam to discuss the prospects of a world recession in the aftermath of the September 11 2001 terrorist attacks in New York. They consistently linked anti terrorist efforts to fighting poverty, underdevelopment and continuing the trend toward democracy and transparency in government. They expressed concerns that some sort of anti-terrorist 'quick fix' would prove more attractive than expensive commitments to broad and vital social change. There are some "root causes" to be faced, said Mali Ambassador, Cheick Oumar Diarrah, citing absence of democracy in many nations and Africa's great poverty, and "[fighting] terrorism should not hide the real agenda of Africa. We cannot use terrorism as an excuse”. The ministers worried about the falling prices for African export goods, as well as the derailing of democratic reforms in the name of national security.
4.3 On 29 October 2001 the African Union Summit on Terrorism opened in Dakar, Senegal. The Summit took place amidst anti-American demonstrations in some parts of the African Union. At least 13 people had died in fights that broke out in the city of Kano following a demonstration against the American air attacks on Afghanistan. Anti-American demonstrations also took place in South Africa and Kenya. The summit agenda included discussions on ways to improve security at African airports, as well as the formation of Anti-Terrorism Task Groups.
4.4 The Summit on Terrorism concluded by adopting a "Declaration Against Terrorism" but stopped short of agreeing on a binding pact. The declaration called on the African Union to hold an extraordinary summit to measure progress in implementing the Convention on Preventing and Combating Terrorism, adopted in Algiers in 1999. At the time of the African Summit on Terrorism in Dakar, the Algiers Convention, reached in the wake of the 1998 bombings of the US embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam, had been adopted by the African Union and by extension all of the constituent republics, but had been but ratified by only three of the constituent republics of the African Union.
4.5 The African Union inherited from the African Community, other treaties and legal instruments that have bearing on the conduct of anti-terrorism policies in Africa, including: the Convention for the Elimination of Mercenarism in Africa, adopted on 3 July 1977 (entered into force on 22 April 1985); Phyto-Sanitary Convention for Africa, adopted on 13 September 1967; Inter-African Convention establishing an African Technical Co-operation Programme, adopted on 1 August 1975; Bamako Convention on the Ban of the Import into Africa and the Control of Trans-boundary Movement and Management of Hazardous Wastes within Africa, adopted in January 1991 (entered into force on 22 April 1998); African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, adopted on 27 June 1981 (entered into force on 21 October 1986); Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Establishment of an African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights, adopted on 10 June 1998; and the African Nuclear Weapons Free-Zone Treaty (The Treaty of Pelindaba).
4.6 In light of the nature of the response of the USA, Russia and other powerful entities in the aftermath of the September 2001 attack in New York, terrorism has assumed importance as a strategic issue critical to the organization of the African Union. African response to terrorism must be broadened to incorporate political, economic, social and environmental matters. At the heart of this new approach is a paramount concern with the consolidation of the articles of the Union Act.
4.7 Security is an all-encompassing condition in which individuals and organizations: operate and participate in the process of governance; enjoy the protection of fundamental rights; have access to resources and the basic necessities of life; and inhabit an environment which is not detrimental to their health and well-being.
4.8 The objectives of an African Security Policy must: encompass the consolidation of unity; the achievement of social justice, economic development and a safe environment; and a substantial reduction in political insecurity. Security and societal and organizational development are inextricably linked and mutually reinforcing.
4.9 The objectives of a policy on terrorism must include the defense of the African sovereignty, territorial integrity, economic stability, political independence of the African Union, and the promotion of human security in the rest of the world (through productive relations, promotion of human rights, and the use of African resources to eradicate poverty and other forms of political, economic and social oppression).
4.10 The greatest threats to Africans are socio-economic problems like poverty, unemployment, lack of capacity to access and act on information, the absence of social services, as well as the destruction of the cultural and familial bonds that sustain our communities. These factors are also responsible for triggering and sustaining terrorism.
4.11 Accordingly, one of the African Union’s policy priorities must be the eradication of poverty and sustainable economic growth and development, and at the same time to participate actively and positively in the world economy and body politic.
4.12 There is consequently a compelling need to reallocate African resources to the mobilizing of public support and resources for the augmentation of the African Union’s organizational capabilities.
4.13 The broad approach to terrorism necessarily implies an expanded role for the African Union in the lives of Africans, and greater latitude in the operation parameters for the instruments of the African Union. In fact by insisting on a rigorous application of treaties, the AU will constrain terrorism and related activities through the process of augmenting and promoting conflict resolution mechanisms, promoting economic prosperity and balanced and equitable distribution of wealth and economic security, and the augmentation of popular participation at all levels of government in Africa.
5. AUF Anti-Terrorist Policy Considerations
5.1 The theme of the AUF Draft Policy on Terrorism is the formulation of a new anti-terrorist policy and the transformation of the African Union into a more peaceful and less conflicted region of the world. Transformation is essential in the light of three sets of factors: the history of terrorism in Africa; the new strategic environment at international, regional and domestic levels; and, most importantly, the organizational challenges confronting the still fragile institutions of the African Union.
5.2 The process of transformation must be guided by the following principles of `Anti-Terrorism in the African Union'. These principles derive from the Constitutive Act and AUF policy.
[a] Security against terrorism shall be sought primarily through efforts to meet the political, economic, social and cultural rights and needs of citizens of the African Union, and through efforts to promote and maintain the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the African Union.
[b] The African Union must pursue unification primarily, and will seek a high level of political, economic and military integration in Africa, as well as the establishment of a strong tradition of good governance.
[c] The African Union must make a priority of ending of armed conflict in Africa, and shall remain committed to ending the political and economic instability. The Union must have a primarily integrative orientation and posture.
5.3 The African Union must press for equal treatment of Africans in addressing terrorism. The failure to compensate African victims of the 1998 bombings of US diplomatic facilities in Nairobi and Dar Es Salaam, and the high profile incidents of violence against members of the African community in the US, such as the dramatic shooting murder in New York of a Senegalese by the police, and the torture of a Haitian by the same police department, continue to be a source of concern about terrorism directed at African by the paramilitary forces around the world.
5.4 The African Union must continue efforts to resolve the problems of communities that are important in generating terrorist actions in the African Union and in the African Diaspora, by addressing their dissent and opposition through acknowledgement of their legitimate concerns (usually the struggle against dictatorship and repression), and through dialogue, disarmament and reintegration into the political and economic process.
6. The Role of the AUF
6.1 The primary role of the AUF as regards the efforts to end terrorism shall be to support the peaceful empowerment of the African Union, and to advance its capacity to fulfill its mandate as stated in the Union Act. The AUF mission is largely consistent with the ultimate aims of African Union, which is the leading Pan African political institution in the world. AUF response to policies of the African Union where they are inadequate to fulfill the requirements of African sovereignty and self-determination shall be to promote policies that serve those requirements.
6.2 The AUF seeks to operate strictly within the parameters of the Constitutive Act and other African Union treaties and legalities, and international humanitarian law, including all of the international Conventions on terrorism, especially those to which African communities are party. The AUF continues to actively advocate for respect for human rights and the democratic political process, and promotes the principle of respect for consensus and equal participation by all peoples in political decisions that impact on their lives.
6.3 AUF anti-terrorism activities must be sufficiently transparent to ensure meaningful public scrutiny and debate, insofar as this does not endanger the lives of AUF personnel or jeopardize the success of the AUF to carry out its mission. These activities may include: monitoring ceasefire agreements; mediation and conflict resolution services for parties involved in political dissent in Africa, including ethnic militias, armies of constituent republics of the AU, and guerrilla forces or other paramilitary organizations; and applying organizational capacity in reorienting policy and activities of military and political organizations in the African Union; instruction of AUF members who may also be members of military or paramilitary organs to refuse orders that may lead them to violate international laws or to commit human rights violations; advocacy for the integration of African armed forces and their transformation into peacekeeping forces; the monitoring of conflicts, relevant policy developments, and violent incidents across the African Union; and the condemnation of counterproductive policies by organizations and governments that participate in domestic and international terrorist actions.
6.4 The AUF has and will continue to develop a non-racial, non-sexist and non-discriminatory institutional mores and promote a culture of tolerance and positive public engagement in the African Union. The composition of the AUF shall broadly reflect the cultural and social composition of the African Union. In fact AUF membership is open to all people, even non-Africans from other regions of the world who have no African heritage of any kind, if they are interested the success of the mission and aims of the AUF.
6.5 In regard to international law considerations: the AUF shall continue to actively promote laws relating to non-aggression; and in situations of armed conflict, the AUF shall comply with the African Unions obligations under international law and all other treaties, including: article 3 that stipulates among other things, to…promote peace, security, and stability on the continent; promote democratic principles and institutions, popular participation and good governance; respect for the sanctity of human life, condemnation and rejection of impunity and political assassination, acts of terrorism and subversive activities; and, condemnation and rejection of unconstitutional changes of governments.
6.6 The AUF Mission Statement reflects the conviction that it must conduct its policies as a responsible member of the African Union and of the international community. The AUF is committed to the defense of all the articles of the UN Charter, and the active promotion of all of the conflict resolution efforts of the OAU/AU. The AUF recognizes and takes seriously its obligation to actively promote and to pursue the ‘Law Against War’, and the ‘Law in War’ stipulations of International Humanitarian Law (contained in the Geneva and the Hague Conventions). These articles contain treaties that outlaw attacks on non-military targets; impose a duty to protect the victims of armed hostilities; prohibit certain methods of warfare; and contain restrictions and absolute prohibitions on the use of specific categories of arms (e.g., chemical and biological weapons, landmines, torture etc).
6.7 The AUF will actively promote respect for all UN Conventions on Terrorism including: the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons, including Diplomatic Agents; the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism; the International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings; the International Convention against the Taking of Hostages; the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material; and other related UN conventions.
6.8 The AUF will actively promote respect for regional anti-terrorist conventions that have direct impact for African agency including: the Convention of the Organization of the Islamic Conference on Combating International Terrorism, adopted at Ouagadougou on 1 July 1999; the Arab Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism, signed at a meeting held at the General Secretariat of the League of Arab States in Cairo on 22 April 1998; the OAS Convention to Prevent and Punish Acts of Terrorism Taking the Form of Crimes against Persons and Related Extortion that are of International Significance, concluded at Washington, D.C. on 2 February 1971; and of course, the OAU Convention on the Prevention and Combating of Terrorism, adopted at Algiers on 13 July 1999.
6.9 The AUF will actively promote efforts to improve the equitable implementation and practical application of all international conventions and treaties that pertain to ending terrorism around the world, and especially those that are consistent with the AUF mission of promoting: high standards within the governance structures of the African Union; engaging the broad masses of Africans in the process of social, economic and political integration; and advancing the cause of African sovereignty, freedom and unity.
The AUF aims to play a positive and productive role in the struggle to end terrorism in the African Union and around the world. We have an obligation to create an integrated and unified Africa in which there is no place for terror and violence. Attention has to be paid to education in the struggle to defend African values, and African social stability and positive relations between different communities, and between communities and governments. This important work has remained utterly inadequate, and it is our duty to actively promote tolerance and the peaceful resolution of conflicts in the African Union and in the African Diaspora.