A joint consultative meeting between the AU Peace and Security Council (PSC) and the UN Security Council began in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa on Saturday.
The annual meeting will deliberate on a range of regional issues, particularly security. The 15-member UN council’s mission led by Gerard Araud, French Ambassador to the UN, conferred with the Ethiopian Prime minister, Meles Zenawi on Saturday.
The high-level UN delegation was briefed on the current situation in Ethiopia.
“The UN delegation has held broad a consultation with Prime Minister Meles Zenawi earlier this morning where both sides discussed peace, security, and stability situations and developments reached in the region” Ambassador Dina Mufti, state foreign affairs spokes person said.
“The delegation was briefed in detail with the current situations and events in Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan” he added. The two sides also discussed the country’s unsettled border dispute with neighbouring Eritrea; which remains unresolved since the1998-2000 war which killed over 70,000 people.
This year’s meeting will deliberate on and review security situations and conflict in Libya, Cote d’Ivoire, and Somalia. Also topping the agenda will be the situation in Sudan where the meeting will consult on ways of clearing pending setbacks for the smooth and peaceful separation of South Sudan which is heading to officially become an independent state on 9 July 2011.
The meeting will be co-chaired by Lungile Pepani, the South African Ambassador and the Permanent Representative to the AU. Following the visit in Ethiopia, the council’s mission will be headed to Khartoum in north Sudan, Juba in South Sudan, Abyei in central Sudan, and Nairobi in Kenya.
During the last stop in Nairobi the delegation will meet senior Kenyan government officials to discuss concerns related to situation in war-torn Somalia. The Council will be back in New York on 27 May to hold consultations ahead of preparations for South Sudan’s declaration of independence and plans for a UN presence in the country.