Notes following Briefing to Media by Deputy Minister Aziz Pahad, Media Centre, Union Buildings, Pretoria, Tuesday 15 July 2008


President Thabo Mbeki, supported by Foreign Minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, will lead a senior South African government delegation to the inaugural South Africa-European Union Summit scheduled for Friday 25 July in Bordeaux, France. 

The high-level South African delegation will also include Ministers Marthinus van Schalkwyk, Mandisi Mpahlwa and Mosibudi Mangena. 

The EU delegation for the Summit will be led by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, and will include Javier Solana, Secretary General of the Council and EU High Representative for CFSP, as well as José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission. 

This first Summit of the South Africa – European Union Troika will be held in the context of the ongoing political dialogue (the Mogôbagôba Dialogue) under the auspices of the SA-EU Strategic Partnership and the SA-EU Trade, Development and Cooperation Agreement (TDCA). 

It will be the first regular Summit since the establishment of the SA-EU Strategic Partnership in May 2007 and is a continuation of discussions that have already taken place during six SA-EU Ministerial Troika meetings since November 2004.  A key objective is to further deepen SA-EU relations and to address shared bilateral, regional and global interests through frank, open and uninhibited discussions and changes of information.

The SA-EU Strategic Partnership

Following the visit of President Mbeki to the EU in November 2004, there was a reappraisal in the European Commission of relations with SA. The Commission felt that SA-EU relations needed to be  elevated beyond the framework provided for in the SA-EU Trade and Development Cooperation Agreement (TDCA) into a substantive strategic partnership along the lines of those the EU has with countries like India and China, etc. This resulted in informal discussions between the SA Mission in Brussels and the European Commission (EC) about the developing nature of the SA-EU relationship, which eventually led to the matter being raised at the November 2005 SA-EU Joint Cooperation Committee (JCC) meeting. The JCC accepted a Joint Report mandating that “… new steps need to be taken to ensure that South Africa – EU relations develop into a truly strategic partnership…”

In February 2006 the European Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid, Mr. Louis Michel, presented President Mbeki and Minister Dlamini Zuma with a non-paper entitled “A possible EU-SA strategic partnership”.  In a letter dated 30 May 2006, President Mbeki provided a preliminary response, in which he expressed himself in favour of a strategic partnership between South Africa and the EU.  Based on the various aforementioned interactions, and also using the opportunity offered by the requirement for a mid-term review of the TDCA, the EC subsequently published a paper on 28 June 2006 titled “Communication from the Commission to the Council and European Parliament: Towards an EU-South Africa Strategic Partnership”.

In November 2006 the JCC adopted a Joint Statement on the SA-EU Strategic Partnership, which called for a Joint Action Plan to be finalised and agreed to at the next SA-EU Ministerial Troika meeting to be held on 14 May 2007, and that a progress report on its implementation be drafted for adoption at the November 2007 JCC. The parties agreed that the Strategic Partnership should add value to the existing cooperation, including the SA-EU Joint Country Strategy Paper (CSP) for 2007-2013, as well as to the present review and full implementation of the TDCA. 

Following several rounds of intense negotiations, the SA-EU Ministerial Troika meeting of 14 May 2007 agreed to the Joint Action Plan for the establishment of the SA-EU Strategic Partnership.  In terms of the structure of the Strategic Partnership and its overall relation to the SA-EU Trade and Development Cooperation Agreement (TDCA) agreement was reached on the following issues, namely:

  • There will be high-level political talks twice a year in Troika format. This forms the core of political dialogue between the EU and South Africa. The meetings will take place in South Africa and the EU. The dialogue should take place at Summit level on a regular basis;
  • High-level ad hoc meetings on issues of common interest will be effected whenever necessary;
  • The JCC should take place alternately in South Africa and the EU.  It will meet at Senior Officials and/or Ministerial level.
  • Full use will be made of opportunities for contacts between South African Ministers and their EU counterparts on issues of mutual interest;
  • There would be periodic meetings at the level of senior officials and experts to exchange views on regional, continental and global issues;
  • To maintain and strengthen regular dialogue at the level of Heads of Mission’s meetings with the South African Department of Foreign Affairs;
  • To review at the Summit, Ministerial Troika and JCC-level meetings the effective implementation of decisions taken, and jointly decide on future actions.

Issues on the agenda of discussions are expected to include, among others:

  • Progress on the implementation of the SA-EU Strategic partnership; 
  • SADC-EU Economic Partnership Agreements;
  • Africa-EU Joint Action Plan;
  • Environment and Climate change;
  • Migration;
  • Food Security;
  • WTO/Doha Development Round; and
  • African and global security issues.

The Summit will be preceded by the 7th SA-EU Ministerial Troika meeting on the morning of Friday 25 July 2008.  The SA delegation to the Ministerial Troika will be led by Foreign Minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, and will also include the Ministers of Environmental Affairs and Tourism, Science and Technology and Trade and Industry. 

The EU Troika delegation will be led by the French Foreign Minister, Bernard Kouchner, and will include Mr Louis Michel, European Commissioner for Development. 

SA-EU Economic Relations

  • The EU is the world’s largest trading bloc and generates about 30% of global GDP and 20% of global trade flows.  It is the world’s biggest aid donor to poor countries, contributing approximately half of global aid.
  • Implementation of the TDCA’s trade provisions has been under way since 2000 with the aim of establishing a Free Trade Area (FTA) between South Africa and the EU by 2012. Total trade has increased over five-fold, from R 56.5 billion in 1994 to R 313 billion in 2007.
  • In 2007 South Africa’s exports to the EU-15 amounted to R 137 billion. The EU ranked as South Africa’s number one exporting region for 2007. South Africa’s total imports from the EU-15 amounted to R 176 billion in 2007, also ranking number one.
  • Europe remains the principal source of foreign direct investment (FDI) in South Africa, accounting for around 80% of total FDI in 2005. Additionally, the EU accounted for approximately 66% of net foreign investment in South Africa in 2003 and 2004, and in 2005 the EU’s share of the total assets held by foreigners in South Africa amounted to approximately 60%.
  • The EU is South Africa’s largest development partner representing approximately 70% of all Overseas Development Assistance (ODA), with South Africa earmarked to receive € 980 million for 2007-2013. The European Investment Bank has also approved a loan mandate of € 900 million for South Africa.

(Rands Billion)





Imports from the EU





Exports to the EU





Total Trade





As I indicated there are many new issues challenging the international community – the high food prices which are leading to demonstrations in many parts of the world, the spiralling oil prices which impact on the food prices and in the context of this, climate change.

This is why I said earlier, this is an important occasion to reassess what was discussed at the G-8 and see how our strategic partnerships as South Africa and the EU, which is indeed a strategic partnership in all senses, can be used to ensure that the G-8 decisions can be implemented and that we work together as South Africa and the EU in the interests, not only of South Africa, but of the African continent as a whole.


The South African government will host the SADC Ministerial meeting of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation (MCO) at the Durban International Conference Centre in KwaZulu Natal scheduled from Friday – Saturday 18-19 July 2008.

The MCO will be chaired by Angola as the current Chair of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation and will consolidate all the work of the Organ regarding political and security issues in the region. The MCO will prepare a report for the Chair of the Organ, Angolan President Jose Eduardo Dos Santos, who will then present it to the SADC Summit for consideration.

The MCO will deliberate on the Interstate Defence and Security Committee (ISDSC) issues particularly on progress made by the Police, Defence, Public Security and State Security Sectors.  Also on the agenda will be deliberations on the operationalisation of the SADCBRIGADE that was launched on 17 August 2007 at the SADC Summit as well as the f launch of the Regional Early Warning centre scheduled for December 2008.

The MCO will further deliberate on the Interstate Politics and Diplomacy (ISPDC) issues including areas of concern such as the political situation in Malawi, the security situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the mediation process by Sir Ketumile Masire in the Kingdom of Lesotho and the post electoral situation in the Republic of Zimbabwe. 


Foreign Minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma will lead a senior South African government delegation to the XV Ministerial Conference of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in Tehran, Iran scheduled from Tuesday – Wednesday 29-30 July 2008.

The South African delegation will participate in this conference held under the banner, “Solidarity for peace, justice and friendship,” with a view to consolidating South-South co-operation as well as to contribute to the revitalisation of the NAM.

The Ministers will receive a report by Cuba, in its capacity as the current Chair of NAM, on the activities of the NAM since the XVI Summit in Havana as well as a Report of the Senior Officials Meeting that will precede the Ministerial meeting.

The Ministerial Conference will review the Movement’s work since the XIV Summit in Havana in 2006 based on these reports, revise and update the Action Plan adopted at the XVI NAM Summit and identify areas requiring action from NAM to meet its goals in the time remaining before the XV Summit that will be hosted by Egypt in 2009. The meeting will conclude with the adoption of the Final Document and, if agreed, a declaration on an issue/issues of concern to the Movement.

Ministers will further deliberate on the following issues:

  • Global Issues including the review of the international situation, international law, promotion and preservation of multilateralism, peaceful settlement of disputes and non-use of threats or use of force, culture of peace and dialogue among civilisations, religions and cultures,  right to self-determination and decolonisation, Follow-up to the Millennium Declaration and the outcomes of Major UN Summits and Conferences, United Nations related issues including reform,  disarmament and international security, terrorism, democracy, North-South dialogue and cooperation and the role of regional organisations;
  • Regional and Sub-Regional issues in the Middle East, Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean;
  • Development, Social and Human Rights issues including least developed countries, landlocked  developing countries and small, trade, South-South cooperation, human rights and fundamental freedoms, International Humanitarian Law, information and communication technology, advancement of women, health, transnational organised crime, drug trafficking and corruption.       

As I have said previously, increasingly, as the world situation becomes more complex and as greater challenges emerge, it is quite obvious that NAM has a greater, more important role to play than it had previously.

We believe that this Ministerial meeting in Iran which will have to discuss under the agenda item of disarmament and international security, also be an opportunity to assess the growing voices calling for military action against Iran and therefore mobilise all sectors of the world to ensure that we do not have another conflict in that area.


 Deputy Foreign Minister Aziz Pahad will on Thursday 17 July 2008 host his Iranian counterpart Deputy Foreign Minister for African Affairs Mohammad Reza Baqeri for political, economic and trade discussions at the Lombardy Hotel in Pretoria.

The discussions between Deputy Ministers Pahad and Bageri will lay the basis for the 10th South Africa – Iran Joint Bilateral Commission that will be co-chaired by Minister Dlamini Zuma and her Iranian counterpart Minister Manoucher Mottaki in Tehran, Iran from Saturday – Sunday 2-3 August 2008.

Ministers Dlamini Zuma and Deputy Minister Pahad will hold discussions with their Iranian counterparts within the context of South Africa’s priority to consolidate political, economic and trade relations with Iran with a view to strengthening South South co-operation.

Issues on the agenda of discussions between Deputy Ministers Pahad and Bageri are expected to include, among others:

  • The status of bilateral political, economic and trade relations between the two countries;
  • An exchange of views on international and regional issues, including the Middle East, Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan;
  • A briefing by Deputy Minister Pahad on developments on the African continent and the outcomes of the recently concluded African Union Summit;
  • Nuclear non-proliferation including the response of Iran to the proposal by the P5+1;
  • Global governance including the comprehensive reform of the United Nations;
  • Regional Co-operation including within the Non-Aligned Movement, the Indian Ocean Rim Association for Regional Co-operation and the New Asia-Africa Strategic Partnership; and
  • A review of the decisions taken during the Ninth Meeting of the South Africa-Iran Joint Commission held in Pretoria on 21 and 22 August 2006.

Bilateral Economic Relations

Several South African companies are involved in major projects in Iran. Sasol is participating in a US$900-million Iranian polymer joint venture, construction of which is now well advanced. The project, which will produce ethylene as well as high- and low-density poly-ethylene, will be launched formally during the first half of 2008 and will increase the group’s polymer production by 300 000 t/y. Sasol is in a 50:50 joint venture with the Iranian state-owned petrochemicals company, Pars Petrochemicals Company (PPC). The joint venture is known as the Arya Sasol Polymer Company.

MTN has a 49% stake in the Iran Cell consortium which was awarded the second mobile telecommunications license in Iran. It started operations in October 2006.


UN Security Council Resolution

The result of the vote was 9 in favour to 5 against (China, Libya, Russian Federation, South Africa, Vietnam), with 1 abstention (Indonesia).  Due to a unique joint veto by 2 permanent members, the Council did not adopt the draft resolution.

It is the view of the South African government that this resolution was not timeous, and indeed, coming in the wake of the AU resolution on this matter which I believe gave the guidelines, was not in the interests of peace and stability, nor indeed did it try to ensure that the Security Council does not take up issues that do not fall fairly and squarely within its ambit.


The African Union Assembly, meeting in its 11th Ordinary Session held on June 30 to July 1, 2008 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt,

DEEPLY CONCERNED with the prevailing situation in Zimbabwe;

DEEPLY CONCERNED with the negative reports of SADC, the African Union and the Pan-African Parliament observers on the Zimbabwean Presidential run-off election held on June 27, 2008;

DEEPLY CONCERNED about the violence and the loss of life that has occurred in Zimbabwe.

CONSIDERING the urgent need to prevent further worsening of the situation and with a view to avoid spread of conflict with the consequential negative impact on the country and the sub-region;

FURTHER CONSIDERING the need to create an environment conducive for democracy, as well as the development of the people of Zimbabwe;

EXPRESSING its appreciation to SADC, and its Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation, as well as the Facilitator of the intra-Zimbabwe dialogue, His Excellency Thabo Mbeki, President of the Republic of South Africa, and His Excellency Jean Ping, Chairperson of the African Union Commission for the ongoing work aimed at reconciling the political parties;

RECOGNISING the complexity of the situation in Zimbabwe;

NOTING the willingness of the political leaders of Zimbabwe to enter into negotiations to establish a Government of National Unity;

NOTING FURTHER the preparatory discussions on this matter had already started, under SADC facilitation;

Hereby decide:

  1. TO ENCOURAGE President Robert Mugabe and the leader of the MDC Party Mr Morgan Tsvangirai to honour their commitment to initiate dialogue with a view to promoting peace, stability, democracy and the reconciliation of the Zimbabwean people;
  2. TO SUPPORT the call, for the creation of a Government of National Unity;
  3. TO SUPPORT the SADC Facilitation, and to recommend that SADC mediation efforts should be continued in order to resolve the problems they are facing.  In this regard SADC should establish a mechanism on the ground in order to seize the momentum for a negotiated solution;
  4. TO APPEAL to states and all parties concerned to refrain from any action that may negatively impact on the climate of dialogue;
  5. In the spirit of all SADC initiatives, the AU remains convinced that the people of Zimbabwe will be able to resolve their differences and work together once again as one Nation, provided they receive undivided support from SADC, the AU and the world at large.

1 July 2008

Prior to this discussion and we had hoped this would influence the co-sponsors not to pursue this path, the AU sent the resolution to the President of the UN Security Council and said:

“Mr President

Pursuant to Article 54 of the United Nations Charter, I have the honour to forward the attached Resolution adopted by the Assembly of Heads of State and Governments of the African Union during their 11th Ordinary Session held from 30 June – 1 July 2008 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt concerning the situation in Zimbabwe.

I also cease this opportunity to inform Your Excellency, and to underscore the fact that African leaders have fully assumed their responsibility in efforts towards addressing the political crises in Zimbabwe, as you are aware.  Indeed, the adoption of this Resolution following in-depth discussions and consultations by African leaders.  We believe the support of the Security Council for its implementation would be crucial, as in other instances.  We therefore urge for the Council to lend its full support for this process at the present stage of its consideration of the situation in Zimbabwe.”

Despite this and all other efforts to encourage the co-sponsors to not act hastily in imposing this resolution, the co-sponsors went ahead and as you know, the results speak for themselves with a historic double veto from Russia and China.

Let me reiterate, we do believe that the AU resolution provides the only possible position to move ahead.  Indeed, the co-sponsors and many others who supported the resolution where quite aware that there was a joint statement issued on Friday 11 July by the SAC Facilitation, the ZANU-PF and the two MDC formations which read:

Joint statement by the SADC facilitator, representatives of ZANU-PF and of the MDC Formations

11 July 2008

Talks between the Zimbabwean political parties consisting of Zanu-PF, MDC-Tsvangirai and MDC-Mutambara, chaired by the Government of South Africa as mandated by SADC, resumed in South Africa yesterday.

The talks are aimed at finding solutions to the challenges in Zimbabwe.

It is quite clear that many of the people who were trying to express caution at the UN Security Council were quite clearly indicating that steps were already being taken to implement the AU resolution on this matter and it is therefore, that the co-sponsors went ahead with this resolution and unfortunate that most extraordinary and non-extractable statements were made both within the council and outside by some of the major powers.  These are matters we will take up through the diplomatic channels.

We will now proceed with the matter of the Facilitation and we hope that the talks that have started will yield progress so that the AU resolution can be implemented.

As you know, the Chairperson of the African Union Commission will be in South Africa on Friday 18 July 2008 for talks with President Mbeki and to be briefed about developments in the talks so that within the context of the AU resolution and the context of our Facilitation, we will keep all the relevant parties – the SADC Organ, the Chair of SADC, and indeed, through the AU structures all other parties in the African Union briefed about the progress that is being made and therefore continue to get the support of the entire African continent in general and SADC in particular to achieve the objectives called for by the AU Summit.

We believe there is tremendous goodwill within Africa to find a solution and we believe that the only way forward is to adhere fully to the resolution of the AU Summit and therefore allow Africa to solve its problems and ask the international community to not do anything that can impact negatively on the solution and rather assist the Africans to find a solution that is very necessary in Zimbabwe.

Many speakers within the Council said that the task of the UN Security Council is to deliver in terms of its mandate and indeed anything it does must help regional structures to achieve the objectives of peace and stability.

Statement by Ambassador Dumisani S Kumalo, in Explanation of Vote at the Security Council Meeting on the Situation in Zimbabwe
Mr. President,

Earlier this morning a joint media statement by the SADC facilitator, the representative of ZANU-PF and the MDC Formations was issued in Pretoria.  The statement reads:

“The talks between the Zimbabwean political parties consisting of ZANU-PF, MDC-Tsvangirai and MDC-Mutambara, chaired by the Government of South Africa as mandated by SADC, resumed in South Africa yesterday.  The talks are aimed at finding solutions to the challenges in Zimbabwe.”

As we meet this afternoon, the talks are continuing in South Africa as the Zimbabwean parties continue to seek a political solution to the challenges they face complicated by the holding of an election which was preceded by violence and political intimidation which resulted with a process that was unfair and declared to be not transparent by the observers from SADC, the African Union and Pan African Parliament.

South Africa was appointed as facilitator at the SADC Extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation held in Dar-Es-Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania on 28-29 March 2007.  At the time, the Extraordinary Summit appealed for the lifting of all forms of sanctions against Zimbabwe.

The African Union Assembly of Heads of State and Government meeting in its 11th Ordinary Session held from 30 June to 1 July 2008 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt expressed deep concern about the prevailing situation in Zimbabwe.  However, when considering this matter, the AU Summit did not call for sanctions against Zimbabwe.  Instead, the AU Summit “appealed to States and all parties concerned to refrain from any action that may negatively impact on the climate for dialogue”.

The Summit also decided “to encourage President Robert Mugabe and the leader of the MDC party, Mr. Morgan Tsvangirai to honour their commitments to initiate dialogue with a view to promoting peace, stability, democracy and reconciliation of the Zimbabwe people”.

It also “expressed its appreciation to SADC, and its Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation as well as the Facilitator of the Intra-Zimbabwe dialogue, H.E. Thabo Mbeki, President of the Republic of South Africa and H.E. Jean Ping, Chairperson of the African Union Commission for the ongoing work aimed at reconciling the political parties”.

Accordingly, South Africa as a member of both SADC and the African Union is obliged to follow the decision of those regional bodies.  For this reason, my delegation will vote against this resolution.

Nonetheless, we are encouraged by the commitment to dialogue by the Zimbabwe parties.  This would lead to the improvement of the humanitarian and economic situation thereby contributing to a better live for all Zimbabweans.  The Security Council must give space for the AU Summit decision to be implemented.

Thank you.


On 14 July 2008, the International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo requested the Judges of the court to indict the leadership of the Government of the Sudan (GOS) particularly President Omar Hassan Ahmed Al-Bashir. This was in response to the mandate that was given to the Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute on crimes against humanity that were referred to him in 2005. The ten charges filed against the GOS leadership include, three counts of genocide, five crimes against humanity and two of murder.

Sudan is not a signatory to the ICC and does not recognise the 1998 Statute of Rome which established the International Criminal Court.

On 13 July 2008, the Council of Ministers in the GOS took a decision to oppose the indictment of its leadership. The government’s position has also elicited support from various interest groups in the Sudan as marches were held in the Capital.

The UN agencies and some Western Missions in the Sudan have elevated the threat level in the country to Phase 4, and have developed evacuation plans for their non-essential personnel.

It is the view of others, that this move occurs at the time when significant progress has been made in the implementation of the key contentious issues of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), such as the Road Map for resolving the Abyei Boundary dispute and the passing of the Electoral Law which paves the way for conducting the general elections in 2009. it is our view that holding of elections in line with the CPA will show Khartoum’s commitment to the return of democracy in the Sudan.

The Arab League will hold an emergency meeting on Saturday 19 July 2008 to deliberate upon this matter and we will await this outcome.

The South African government will co-ordinate its response to the matter taking into account the views of the Arab League and the African Union.

South Africa is one of the founding members of the International Criminal Court and we devote a lot of attention to the work of the ICC. 

Update re: Situation in Sudan

On 7 July 2008, the Election Act was passed by Parliament after the signatories to the CPA agreed on the contentious issues that had delayed the passing of the Election Act. This paves the way for the Parties to begin preparations for the elections to be held in July 2009 as mandated in the CPA.

Following the outbreak of violence in Abyei that led to the displacement of over 50 000 people and the destruction of Abyei town and looting of properties of civilian, the SPLM and the NCP signed the “Roadmap for Return of IDP’s and implementation of Abyei Protocol” on 8 June 2008.

On 18 June a 640 stronghold battalion of SPLA troops was deployed to form a new battalion as agreed in the Roadmap. This joint force will be the sole military force in the Abyei region. The UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) will also enjoy free movement and access to both north and south of Abyei.  The above is to pave the way for the return of the internally displace persons (IDP’s). 

The Darfur Peace Process is in a process of being revived, following the appointment of the Burkina Faso Foreign Minister, Djibril Bassole as the new UN and AU joint chief mediator for Darfur. However insecurity still prevails, as peacekeepers were attacked on 8 July 2008 where 7 UNAMID peacekeepers were killed and 22 injured. Among the injured it is alleged South African forces are amongst them.

South Africa continues to support the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) through Post Conflict and Reconstruction Development Programmes. The DFA-GOSS-UNISA Capacity and Institution Building Project for Southern Sudan is running optimally. Preparations are underway for the training of 80 GOSS officials in Correctional Services and Judiciary. The training is scheduled to take place on 3 August 2008, training in this regard will be funded by Germany following the signing of an agreement by South Africa and Germany making provision for Germany to fund Correctional Services, Legal Services and Judicial Affairs training programmes.

The project will be entering its third phase in September 2008. The target group for phase three will focus on the leadership of Southern Sudan (having wider political participation) at GoSS, States and local levels of government. The majority of the training will be done in Southern Sudan in order to train larger numbers for a longer period at the same value as the current training in South Africa.

The indictment will pose a stumbling block to the joint UN-AU effort towards finding a political solution to the lasting peace, stability and development in the Sudan particularly the western region of Darfur. This move will further stall the full deployment of UNAMID particularly troop contributions by non-African countries.

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is the only body that can bring a temporary relief to the impending crisis in the Sudan. The UNSC is authorised to exercise its power under Article 16 of the Rome Statute to suspend any prosecutions if it is satisfied that there is progress in the realisation of peace in the affected country.

AU Peace and Security Council Resolution

Statement of the AU Chairperson

The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 141st meeting held on 11 July 2008, was briefed by the Deputy Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on some of the activities of the ICC.

Council took note of the briefing and recalled the statement issued at the end of its 56th meeting following a similar briefing by the President and Prosecutor of the ICC.

Council reaffirmed the commitment of the African Union to combating impunity, in conformity with the relevant provisions of the AU Constitutive Act and other continental instruments, as well as the decisions of the Peace and Security Council.

At the same time, Council expressed its strong conviction that the search for justice should be pursued in a way that does not impede or jeopardize efforts aimed at promoting lasting peace and recalled that, in resolution 1593 (2005) of 31 March 2005, the United Nations Security Council also emphasized the need to promote healing and reconciliation.

In addition, Council recalled decision Assembly/AU/14(XI), adopted by the 11th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union held from 30 June to 1 July 2008, in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, reiterated the AU’s concern with the misuse of indictments against African leaders.
Addis Ababa, 11 July 2008


UN Security Council Resolution

The text – co-sponsored by Australia, Belgium, Canada, Croatia, France, Italy, Liberia, New Zealand, Netherlands, Sierra Leone, United Kingdom and the United States -- reads as follows:
The Security Council,

Affirming its commitment to the independence and territorial integrity of Zimbabwe,

Reaffirming the statement of its President of 23 June 2008 concerning the situation in Zimbabwe (S/PRST/2008/23),

Reaffirming the 2005 World Summit Outcome Document that acknowledges that peace and security, development and human rights are the pillars of the United Nations system and the foundations for collective security and well being, and recognizing that development, peace and security and human rights are interlinked and mutually reinforcing,

Recalling the African Union resolution on Zimbabwe of 1 July 2008, which expressed its concern with the loss of life and violence in Zimbabwe, the need to prevent a worsening of the situation to avoid the spread of the conflict across the subregion, the need to create an environment conducive for democracy, and which encouraged Zimbabwean leaders to initiate dialogue with a view to promoting peace, stability, democracy and reconciliation,

Recalling the statements of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), Pan-African Parliament, and African Union Observer missions to Zimbabwe on 29 June 2008, which found that the elections fell short of accepted African Union standards, did not give rise to free, fair or credible elections, and did not reflect the will of the Zimbabwean people,

Expressing strong concern at the irregularities during the 27 June presidential election, the violence and intimidation perpetrated in the run up to the election that made impossible the holding of free and fair elections, and the creation of an environment that did not permit international election observers to operate freely before and during the 27 June vote,

Expressing strong concern over the grave humanitarian situation in Zimbabwe which has been exacerbated by the Government of Zimbabwe’s misuse of food aid as a political tool and its suspension of humanitarian relief programmes, conducted by international and non-governmental organizations, and that this suspension is depriving the Zimbabwean people, in particular vulnerable people, including those displaced by violence and women, children and orphans, of basic humanitarian assistance,

Condemning the violence and loss of life that has caused the displacement of thousands of Zimbabweans, many of whom have been driven to take refuge in neighbouring countries,

Condemning also the arbitrary arrests, restrictions on the right of assembly, seizure of vehicles, threats, intimidation and violence directed against supporters of the opposition political party, as well as the repeated detention of its leaders,

Taking note of the statements and expressions of concern by African regional organizations and current and former Heads of State about the impact of the situation in Zimbabwe on the stability of the wider region, and expressing its grave concern over that impact,

Recognizing that the destabilizing impact of the situation in Zimbabwe on the wider region is reflected in the burden placed on States in the region by the presence of Zimbabwean economic migrants and refugees,

Recalling its resolution 1809 (2008) on peace and security in Africa, and reaffirming its support for Southern African Development Community and African Union efforts to resolve the crisis in Zimbabwe in such a way that reflects the will of the Zimbabwean people as expressed in the 29 March elections, and calling on the Government of Zimbabwe to cooperate with these efforts,

Reaffirming its support for the good offices mission of the Secretary-General, led by Assistant Secretary-General Haile Menkerios, and expressing strong support for the continuing efforts of the Secretary-General and his representatives,

Urging all parties to immediately take the necessary steps to prevent and put an end to abuses of human rights and underlining that those responsible for such abuses should be held accountable,

Determining that the situation in Zimbabwe poses a threat to international peace and security in the region,

Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,

“1.   Condemns the Government of Zimbabwe’s campaign of violence against the political opposition and the civilian population, which has resulted in scores of deaths, thousands of injuries, and displacement of thousands of civilians, making it impossible for a free and fair election to occur, and expresses strong concern with the decision of the Government of Zimbabwe to go forward with the 27 June elections;

“2.   Demands that the Government of Zimbabwe:

(a)   Immediately cease attacks against and intimidation of opposition members and supporters, including those by non-government agents affiliated with the ZANU-PF party, and in particular end the abuse of human rights, including widespread beatings, torture, killings, sexual violence, and displacement, and release all political prisoners;

(b)   Begin without delay a substantive and inclusive political dialogue between the parties with the aim of arriving at a peaceful solution that reflects the will of the Zimbabwean people and respects the results of the 29 March elections;

(c)   Accept the good offices offered by the African Union, the Southern African Development Community, and the Secretary-General, giving such representatives full access to the country, security, and all requested authority over negotiation processes;

(d)   Cooperate fully with investigations of the political violence experienced by the country between March and June 2008 and hold accountable those who have carried out abuses of human rights;

(e)   End immediately all restrictions on international humanitarian assistance and support international aid organizations’ access to all parts of the country for distribution of food, medical assistance, and other humanitarian aid;

“3.   Requests the Secretary-General to appoint as soon as possible an individual of international standing and expertise to serve as his Special Representative on the situation in Zimbabwe who would:

(a)   support the negotiation process between the political parties in Zimbabwe;

(b)   report to the Council on the political, humanitarian, human rights and security situation in Zimbabwe;

“4.   Decides that all Member States shall take the necessary measures to prevent the direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer to Zimbabwe, through their territories or by their nationals, or using their flag vessels or aircraft, and whether or not originating in their territories, of arms or related material of all types, including weapons and ammunition, military vehicles and equipment, paramilitary equipment, and spare parts for the aforementioned;

“5.   Decides also that all Member States shall also take the necessary measures to prevent any provision to Zimbabwe by their nationals or from their territories of technical assistance or training, financial assistance, investment, brokering or other services, and the transfer of financial resources or services, related to the supply, sale, transfer, manufacture or use of the items specified in paragraph 4 above;

“6.   Decides further that the measures imposed by paragraphs 4 and 5 above shall not apply to:

(a)   Supplies of non-lethal military equipment intended solely for humanitarian or protective use, and related technical assistance or training; and

(b)   Supplies of protective clothing, including flak jackets and military helmets, for the personal use of United Nations personnel, representatives of the media and humanitarian and development workers and associated personnel;

“7.   Decides that all States shall take the following measures with respect to individuals and entities designated in the Annex to this resolution or designated by the Committee established pursuant to paragraph 10 below (“the Committee”) as having engaged in or provided support for actions or policies to subvert democratic processes or institutions in Zimbabwe since May 2005, including having ordered, planned, or participated in acts of politically motivated violence, or as providing support to individuals or entities designated pursuant to this paragraph:

(a)   prevent the entry into or transit through their territories of these individuals, provided that nothing in this paragraph shall obligate a State to refuse entry into or require departure from its territory of its own nationals;

(b)   freeze without delay all funds, other financial assets and economic resources that are in their territories on the date of adoption of this resolution or at any time thereafter, that are owned or controlled, directly or indirectly, by these individuals or entities, or by individuals or entities acting on their behalf or at their direction, and ensure that no funds, other financial assets or economic resources are made available by their nationals or by any persons within their territories to or for the benefit of such individuals or entities;

“8.   Decides that the measures imposed by paragraph 7 (a) above do not apply where the Committee determines on a case-by-case basis that such travel is justified on the ground of humanitarian need, including religious obligation, or where the Committee concludes that an exemption would otherwise further the objectives of this resolution;

“9.   Decides that the measures imposed by paragraph 7 (b) of this resolution do not apply to funds, other financial assets or economic resources that have been determined by relevant States:

(a)   to be necessary for basic expenses, including payment for foodstuffs, rent or mortgage, medicines and medical treatment, taxes, insurance premiums, and public utility charges or exclusively for payment of reasonable professional fees and reimbursement of incurred expenses associated with the provision of legal services, or fees or service charges, in accordance with national laws, for routine holding or maintenance of frozen funds, other financial assets and economic resources, after notification by the relevant States to the Committee of the intention to authorize, where appropriate, access to such funds, other financial assets or economic resources and in the absence of a negative decision by the Committee within three working days of such notification;

(b)   to be necessary for extraordinary expenses, provided that such determination has been notified by the relevant States to the Committee and has been approved by the Committee; or

(c)   to be the subject of a judicial, administrative or arbitral lien or judgement, in which case the funds, or other financial assets and economic resources may be used to satisfy that lien or judgement provided that the lien or judgement was entered prior to the date of the present resolution, is not for the benefit of a person or entity designated by the Committee pursuant to paragraph 7 above, and has been notified by the relevant States to the Committee;

“10.  Decides to establish, in accordance with rule 28 of its provisional rules of procedure, a Committee of the Security Council consisting of all the members of the Council, to undertake the following tasks:

(a)   to seek from all States, in particular those in the region, information regarding the actions taken by them to implement effectively the measures referred to in paragraphs 4, 5 and 7 of this resolution and whatever further information it may consider useful in this regard;

(b)   to examine and take appropriate action on information regarding alleged violations of measures imposed by paragraphs 4, 5 and 7 of this resolution;

(c)   to designate individuals and entities subject to the measures imposed by paragraph 7 of this resolution;

(d)   to consider and decide upon requests for exemptions set out in paragraphs 8 and 9 of this resolution;

(e)   to establish guidelines as may be necessary to facilitate the implementation of the measures imposed by this resolution;

(f)   to report at least every 90 days to the Security Council on its work and on the implementation of this resolution, with its observations and recommendations, in particular on ways to strengthen the effectiveness of the measures imposed in this resolution;

(g)   to assess reports from the Panel of Experts established pursuant to paragraph 11 below, and from Member States on specific steps they are taking to implement the measures imposed by paragraphs 4, 5 and 7 above;

(h)   to encourage a dialogue between the Committee and interested Member States, in particular those in the region, including by inviting representatives of such States to meet with the Committee to discuss implementation of the measures;

“11.  Requests the Secretary-General to establish, within 30 days of the adoption of this resolution, in consultation with the Committee, for a period of twelve months a Panel of Experts comprised of four members with the range of expertise necessary to fulfil the Panel’s mandate described in this paragraph, to operate under the direction of the Committee to undertake the following tasks:

(a)   to assist the Committee in monitoring implementation of the measures in paragraphs 4, 5 and 7 of this resolution, and to make recommendations to the Committee on actions the Council may want to consider; and

(b)   to provide a midterm briefing on its work to the Committee, and an interim report no later than 90 days after adoption of this resolution, and a final report no later than 30 days prior to the termination of its mandate to the Council through the Committee with its finding and recommendations;

“12.  Expresses its readiness to review the measures imposed in paragraphs 4, 5, and 7 of this resolution in 12 months following the date of adoption of this resolution or sooner if before such time an inclusive political settlement is agreed, which respects the will of the Zimbabwean people and the results of the 29 March 2008 elections;

“13.  Requests the Secretary-General to submit a report to the Council regarding the situation in Zimbabwe, whether the Government of Zimbabwe has complied with the demands in paragraph 2 above, and what additional measures may contribute to improving the security, humanitarian, and human rights situation in Zimbabwe;

“14.  Decides that all States shall report to the Committee established by the Council within 90 days of the adoption of this resolution on the steps they have taken with a view to implementing effectively the measures imposed in paragraphs 4, 5 and 7 above;

“15.  Decides to remain seized of the matter.”

Resolution Annex

1.    Mugabe, Robert
(Member/Head of Government responsible for activities that seriously undermine democracy, repress human rights and disrespect the rule of law)

2.    Chiwenga, Constantine
(Member of security forces who directed repressive State policy and has committed human rights abuses)

3.    Mnangagwa, Emmerson
(Member of Government responsible for activities that seriously undermine democracy, repress human rights and disrespect the rule of law)

4.    Gono, Gideon
(Reserve Bank Governor who is responsible for funding repressive State policies)

5.    Chihuri, Augustine
(Member of security forces who bears wide responsibility for serious violations of the freedom of peaceful assembly)

6.    Chinamasa, Patrick
(Member of Government responsible for activities that seriously undermine democracy, repress human rights and disrespect the rule of law)

7.    Shiri, Perence
(Member of security forces complicit in forming or directing oppressive State policy)

8.    Parirenyatwa, David
(Member of Government responsible for activities that seriously undermine democracy, repress human rights and disrespect the rule of law)

9.    Mutasa, Didymus
(Member of Government responsible for activities that seriously undermine democracy, repress human rights and disrespect the rule of law)

10.   Charamba, George
(Member of Government complicit in forming or directing oppressive State policy)

11.   Zimondi, Paradzi
(Member of security forces complicit in forming oppressive State policy)

12.   Bonyongwe, Happyton
(Member of security forces complicit in forming or directing oppressive State policy)

13.   Sekeremayi, Sydney Tigere
(Member of Government complicit in forming or directing oppressive State policy)

14.   Made, Joseph Mtakwese
(Member of Government complicit in forming or directing oppressive State policy)

Questions and Answers

Question Deputy Minister, do you expect an agreement this week on the framework of the Zimbabwe talks?

Question Deputy Minister, will the talks in Pretoria resume today?  Can you update us on the agenda and progress of the talks?

Answer As I have indicated, there was a joint statement put out last Friday by all parties indicating that they have started talks and that their objective was to find a solution. 

There was a decision by all parties, including the Facilitation that we could not negotiate such a complex and crucial matter through the media and therefore it is our view, that because of the sensitivity and issues of the Facilitation and the three parties, we would best leave it for the progress to be made and for the public announcements to be made at that time.  I see the South African media are speculating on leaked information – I am not privy to such information but it is clear that everybody understands the need to move expeditiously to find a solution to the Zimbabwean political and economic crises.

We expect that the Facilitation, will at the appropriate time, make an announcement about the progress that has been achieved.

Question Deputy Minister, I would like to know the South African government’s position on the indictment of President El-Bashir by the International Criminal Court?

Answer South Africa is a co-architect of the ICC and indeed, we were one of the first signatories of the ICC.  It is important to note that some major powers have not yet acceded to the ICC.

It is not a question of supporting this indictment – South Africa is committed to the fight against impunity, wherever it emerges.  But we have always said that action that are taken must be based on the correct timing and must have the correct objectives.  I have already quoted the statement by the African Union’s Peace and Security Council – we will be driven by that.

The Chairperson of the AU has expressed concern about the indictment and has said he does not think it will help the process in finding long term stability in Sudan as a whole and in Darfur specifically.  Many concerns have been expressed about the potential negative impact on attempts to operationalise UNAMID.  So the AU has through its Chairperson and the Peace and Security Council, expressed concern not with the principle of fighting impunity but with the timing and the objective of the action.  All the signs are there that progress is being made at the moment.

As I have also said, the Arab League has called for an emergency meeting on Saturday – we will interact with each other to determine how we would respond.

We do not wish to undermine the work of the ICC – in fact we want to do everything possible to strengthen the ICC.  It is important for the ICC to understand that sometimes they must consult before taking actions. 

As a constitutional expert has said, this indictment, even if it is granted, will take months to finalise.  Once it is granted, what happens?  You cannot arrest President El-Bashir, who is going to arrest him?  So, it is important for the ICC to take actions that do not undermine its very important role and therefore be seen to be contributing to solutions.

It will be the first time that a sitting Head of State will be indicated like this.  Some experts have indicated that this could have a destabilizing impact on the Sudanese body politick.  We are watching this very carefully and with great concern because we would not want anything that can further impede the progress that has been made in Sudan.

Question Deputy Minister, you mentioned extraordinary remarks by some members of the Council – could you please expand upon this?

Answer It has been widely reported – you know that in the Council the British representative stated that while they support our mediation, we have achieved “nought.”  They went on to explain why we have achieved nothing and went on to call for sanctions.

The American representative in the Council made some remarks about the Russian Federation to which Russia has already responded – about them having given some undertaking at the G8 and therefore they may not be suitable members of the G8.  The Russians responded by saying that they were discussing the Zimbabwean issue at the G8 without discussing Chapter 7 resolutions at the UN Security Council and therefore the US representatives comments about Russia and China (in relation to the Chinese veto) were unacceptable.

In relation to South Africa, the US representative, outside the Security Council chambers went on to suggest that President Mbeki is out of touch with his own country and then referred to other South Africans who may be more in touch and therefore he was suggesting that the time was right for the President to go.

These are not acceptable statements and we will take this up through the relevant diplomatic channels.  We do not make statements about the performance of other countries and therefore I hope that there most senior UN representatives will also understand how diplomacy works and go through the right channels.

I am not sure if they were all shocked about what eventually happened.  If they had asked for our advice we would have given it to them.  We would have said that there was great concern amongst two permanent members of the UN Security Council and other members of the Security Council about pushing ahead with such haste and without allowing for us to get a better understanding of the African Union resolution and allow the UN Security Council to assist rather than hinder the way forward.  But, we are now sitting with a situation and we hope that we can reconcile the different positions to get the UN to support the AU mandated SADC mediation process.

You are aware, as I have said, that the Chairperson of the AU Commission will be here on Friday to be briefed by the President about progress so there is constant contact with all structures of the African Union about progress that is being made or not being made in the mediation process.

Question Deputy Minister, it was indicated yesterday that the visit of Mr Ping to South Africa was an emergency measure?  Can you comment on this?  Will the broadening of the SADC mediation effort be discussed between President Mbeki and Mr Ping?

Answer Mr Ping is not coming to South Africa in an emergency situation.  As you know, Chairperson Ping is in France at the Mediterranean Summit from where he travelled to Accra to prepare for the Turkish-Africa Summit and in the context of the AU resolution, which is the resolution we have to continue to work from, it is quite important that the Chairperson of the Commission of the AU is regularly briefed about the process. 

Our view has always been, and I am stressing it, we are being diverted by a fake argument about the expansion of the SADC Facilitation – the Facilitation is not South Africa only.  South Africa is conducting the Facilitation on behalf of SADC and therefore involves the Organ Chair, who, through the processes by which we work, have to brief the Chair of SADC; the Chair of SADC has to brief the Chair of the AU who has to brief all other members including the Peace and Security Council.  Africa is totally involved in supporting the mediation that is being carried out by South Africa and President Mbeki as mandated by SADC and now by the African Union.

It is not a single country mediation, it involves everybody and it is incumbent upon the mediation to brief all relevant roleplayers on a regular basis about developments in this process because in the end, we have to carry out a SADC mandate endorsed by the African Union.  So, there is no emergency reason for Mr Ping to visit South Africa.

Question Deputy Minister, if so many countries are involved in this mediation, then it would be very easy to acquiesce to what the MDC wants and have somebody else in the room.  Why doesn’t this happen?

Answer This must then emerge from their discussions.  I say this is a fake argument and diverts from the real fundamental issue and if the parties feel strongly, then through the mediation, and others, they all have contacts with many other Heads of State in Africa, they can continue to reflect this.

I don’t believe that at this very crucial moment, adding new bodies, simply to sit in the same room, is what is required.  What is required is that Zimbabweans, given their understanding of the view of all of Africa, about our concerns about developments in Zimbabwe post-March elections, that the Zimbabweans don’t have the luxury of not finding a solution to which they have all publicly committed themselves.  They have committed themselves to an inclusive government.  The task is now, not to just add more people for the sake of adding them, I am not aware if they raised this issue when they met last week or not.

The mediation is continuing – why we receive continuous reports about them being unhappy – why don’t we just allow the process to proceed and where they believe the process is not succeeding, let them indicate this and we can see how we can deal with this.

My personal view is that, and I am stressing this, I think this is a diversion.  It is a fake argument.

Why did 53 African Heads of State at the AU Summit, after hours of robust discussions come to the conclusion that the SADC mediation carried out under President Mbeki is what they are supporting.  They have understood what the reality is on the ground.  They have understood at what the stage the mediation process is currently at and therefore, did not want to do anything that merely becomes a diversion rather than continuing the process that is currently underway and achieving progress.

That was a decision of 53 Heads of State by consensus – there was no different position.

Question Deputy Minister, (inaudible)

Answer I am not aware, I being at Foreign Affairs, have not received anything officially on this matter.  What I have picked up is through the media.  I am not sure if this has been raised in the mediation.  In Zimbabwe, we are briefed at all times so I am not aware of official communication in this regard other than what I pick up through the media.

Question Deputy Minister, how would you characterise the relationship between President Mbeki and the MDC?

Answer Very good – I can only judge by what I can see – why else would they be in the talks.  I say very good, in relative terms to what you as the media refer to hostile.  His relations are equally good with each of the MDC parties and the Zanu-PF.  There is nobody who has proven to me that President Mbeki, in the mediation, has taken sides on behalf of one or the other.

I have repeatedly said in these briefings that we continue to ignore that it was precisely because of the mediation that the elections in March were held successfully.  We continue to ignore the progress.  Nobody has said that until the March 29th elections that President Mbeki was biased against one side or another.  The media was saying that, the media was speculating that the elections were going to fail but to everybody’s surprise, they were regarded as the best elections in Zimbabwe.  So, for me, this indicated that there was something wrong – people were receiving incorrect information and were not aware of the reality on the ground.  This was the only conclusion to which I could come.

Question Deputy Minister, since the failure of the Security Council resolution, the British and Americans have indicated that they will be maintaining pressure on President Mugabe?  Do you think this is useful?

Answer As you are aware, EU and US smart sanctions have been place for some time now.  You have sanctions or not.  Nobody has been talking about whether we like it or not – that is an independent decision.

The Security Council is another matter – it is a whole new dimension to this debate – it is a chapter 7 resolution and comes at a time where it takes no notice of what 53 African Heads of State have resolved and were therefore going against all precedence in allowing regional groupings to solve their problems and supporting them and not doing things that impede the process.  There was a difference in what has long been in place by the EU and US.  If they want to increase this, they do not have to go to the UN Security Council to get Chapter 7 resolutions.  These sanctions have been increasingly toughened.  We were concerned about the incorrect position that was being taken in the UN Security Council after the Sharm el-Sheikh resolution on Zimbabwe.  You either have sanctions or not – not smart or stupid sanctions.  That does not make sense.

Question Deputy Minister, does the South African government agree with Zanu-PF that these smart sanctions have contributed to the deteriorating economic situation in Zimbabwe?

Answer This is a very complex issue and many factors have led to the political, economic and social crisis in Zimbabwe.  And, nobody challenges that we are facing a very serious crisis in Zimbabwe.  This is reflected by the observer mission report, this is the essence of the AU resolution, the essence of what many countries have said.  The causes of numerous.  I don’t think we can now say only one reason contributed to this.  I have not sufficiently studied this.  Many people have indicated that although the sanctions may have contributed to this, it could not have been the sole reason.

Issued by Department of Foreign Affairs
Private Bag X152

15 July 2008



Quick Links

Disclaimer | Contact Us | HomeLast Updated: 15 July, 2008 3:22 PM
This site is best viewed using 800 x 600 resolution with Internet Explorer 5.0, Netscape Communicator 4.5 or higher.
2003 Department of Foreign Affairs, Republic of South Africa