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Press Release: African Union supports ISS Peace Academy
1 August 2010

Press Release 1 August 2010:

Pretoria, South Africa

African Union supports ISS Peace Academy

During the recent Summit meeting of the African Union in Kampala, Uganda, Heads of State welcomed the initiatives taken by a number of African civil society organizations who responded to the call for a partnership with the African Union on 2010 as the Year of Peace and Security in Africa. Amongst others, the Assembly expressed its apprecation of the efforts by "... the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), which is working towards the launching of a Peace Academy as an important tool for the enhancement of Africa`s capacity in the area of peace and security..." (Assembly Decision no 8, par 7).

Institute executive director Jakkie Cilliers expressed his appreciation of the recognition and support from the African Union. He explained that the ISS Peace Academy is intended to prepare today`s and tomorrow`s African leaders to respond effectively to the security challenges of the 21 century. Alumni from ISS PA courses will be encouraged to remain engaged in the Academy`s activities through the establishment of an alumni network whose purpose will be to build an African human security community with expanded capacity to better manage the manifold challenges that confront the continent.

The ISS Peace Academy will draw on the reputation and support of the ISS in the provision of high quality research, conferences and seminars, as well as the experience of the Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP) as an internationally renowned training centre with fifteen years experience in this field. This relationship will draw on the strengths of both institutions and will ensure the highest quality training. Core activity will be the provision of expert training at the conceptual and strategic level in African peace and security for mid-career diplomats, military officers, and civil servants from African foreign, defence, and other relevant ministries, as well as from international organizations and non-governmental organizations engaged with African issues. Participants in courses will primarily come from Africa but also include participants from the international community. While its principal course (lasting up to three months) as well as short courses will be offered at the ISS Peace Academy, it will also offer needs based courses elsewhere in Africa, as well as at the Geneva offices of GCSP.

Following a start-up period of six months, the inititial proposal is for five years. The Academy itself will have a small staff component and source in teaching staff as appropriate from fellow African research, training and other institutions. The Academy will be operational during 2011.

For more information, contact:

Dr Jakkie Cilliers

Amb Nicolas Bwakir