The African Union and DRR work in the Middle East

The African Union:

The Organisation of African Unity (OAU) was founded in 1963, with the objectives “to promote the unity and solidarity of African states; coordinate and intensify their cooperation and efforts to achieve a better life for the peoples of Africa; safeguard the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Member States; rid the continent of colonisation and apartheid; promote international cooperation within the United Nations framework; and harmonise members’ political, diplomatic, economic, educational, cultural, health, welfare, scientific, technical and defence policies. Through the 1990s, leaders debated the need to amend the OAU’s structures to reflect the challenges of a changing world. In 1999, the OAU Heads of State and Government issued the Sirte Declaration calling for the establishment of a new African Union. The vision for the Union was to build on the OAU’s work by establishing a body that could accelerate the process of integration in Africa, support the empowerment of African states in the global economy and address the multifaceted social, economic and political problems facing the continent.”

Organisational contribution to disaster risk reduction:

As explained on UNISDR’s webpage, the African Union has developed an “Africa regional strategy for disaster risk reduction”:

“To develop the Strategy, a baseline study was carried out to establish the status of disaster risk reduction in Africa. It emerged from the study that development was at risk from disasters mainly because of gaps in the following areas: institutional frameworks; risk identification; knowledge management; governance; and emergency response. In the light of all the above concerns, the aim of the Strategy is to contribute to the attainment of sustainable development and poverty eradication by facilitating the integration of disaster risk reduction into development.

The Strategy’s objectives are to: 
(1) increase political commitment to disaster risk reduction; 
(2) improve identification and assessment of disaster risks; 
(3) enhance knowledge management for disaster risk reduction; 
(4) increase public awareness of disaster risk reduction; 
(5) improve governance of disaster risk reduction institutions; and 
(6) integrate of disaster risk reduction in emergency response management.”

 

Formal engagement with IFRC:

The African Union and the IFRC have a cooperation agreement that commits parties to collaborate in matters of mutual interest. National Societies are permanently and proactively represented at the African Union in Addis Ababa through the IFRC representative office. (see https://fednet.ifrc.org/FedNet/Resources_and_Services/Human%20Diplomacy/International%20relations/Agreements/Agreement-OAU-signed1996.pdf

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