The EU provides additional support to security and peace in Somalia
Today, the European Commission decided to provide a further €50 million to the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) which brings the EU contribution to a total of € 258 million since 2007.
Catherine Ashton, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and European Commission Vice-President, underlined that: "The EU is working with the African Union to bring to an end to the crisis in Somalia. This support to AMISOM is part of the comprehensive approach we have developed in support to the Horn of Africa, in terms of security and the fight against piracy, development assistance and humanitarian aid."
Andris Piebalgs, EU Commissioner for Development, stated: "AMISOM plays a key role in creating the ground for a better future of Somalia, giving the people of the country hope and a perspective of peace. Today’s decision is a clear sign that the EU remains committed to supporting AMISOM in its mission of creating the necessary pre-conditions that will enable the Somali authorities to bring security to its people and progress in the peace process."
AMISOM is an African Union-led mission, mandated by the United Nations Security Council. It has been active in Somalia since 2007, supporting dialogue and reconciliation and providing protection to key infrastructures (e.g. government buildings and the Mogadishu International Airport) to enable the Transitional Federal Institutions to carry out their functions. The mission is also assisting in the implementation of the national Security and Stabilisation plan, providing support to disarmament and stabilisation efforts, as well as facilitating humanitarian operations, including repatriation of refugees and internally displaced persons.
Over the past few months, substantial military progress has been achieved, as AMISOM and the forces of the Somali Transitional Federal Government (TFG) have regained control of most of the capital of Mogadishu. Current force levels have reached about 9,800. The renewed EU support, will allow AMISOM to continue to fulfil its mandate and to reach its total UN authorised strength of 12,000.
Since the deployment of AMISOM, the EU has been one of the main funders of the operation both through the African Peace Facility and through bilateral contributions of its Member States. The EU provides the mission with predictable and continued support and covers costs such as allowances, medical care, housing, fuel, and communication equipment.
The EU support to AMISOM is funded under the African Peace Facility (APF), which provides substantial predictable funding for Africa-led Peace Support operations and supports the African Peace and Security Architecture as well as the EU-Africa dialogue on peace and security. Total APF funding for the period 2004–2013 amounts to over €1 billion. The APF is the major instrument of the Partnership on Peace and Security of the Joint Africa-EU Strategy.
The APF's financial support to AMISOM is an integral part of the EU's comprehensive and long-term approach to support security and development efforts in Somalia. This approach contains political, diplomatic, civilian, military, humanitarian, and development dimensions. In the framework of the Common Security and Defence Policy, two EU military missions are currently contributing to regional security: the EU EUNAVFOR Operation Atalanta, which improves maritime security by fighting piracy in the Indian Ocean and escorting ships transporting humanitarian assistance of the World Food Programme, and the military training mission EUTM Somalia that contributes to the training of the Somali Security Forces. On 1 December the Foreign Affairs Council agreed to complement these operations with a new civilian training mission in order to strengthen the maritime capacities of eight countries in the Horn of Africa and the Western Indian Ocean.