Africa and the International Order at a Time of Global Crisis

Concept Note

The international order is at a crossroad. The war by Russia on Ukraine has set in motion reaction of various parts of the world plunging the international order, anchored on the UN Charter, into crisis unprecedented since the end of the Cold War. As the Permanent Representative of Kenya to the UN put it, ‘multilateralism is on its death bed.’

Without a doubt, Africa, as other parts of the world, cannot escape the consequences of this global conflagration. More worryingly, on account of existing vulnerabilities of countries on the continent, the impact of this crisis is sure to be heavy for Africa. Apart from the critical question of how African states should push for and champion the crafting of a more inclusive and sustainable multilateral order than the failing post-1945 system, there is the immediate question of how this extraordinary crisis facing multilateralism affects the prevailing peace and security situation on the continent.

The peace and security landscape in Africa has witnessed a number of shifts in the past years. More particularly in 2021 the deterioration of conflicts has dominated the peace and security setting of some regions in the continent. Trends related to the expansion of the territorial scope of terrorism, military coups, complex political transitions, worsening humanitarian challenges, natural disasters and the effects of climate change continue to affect a large part of the continent. Given that deepening rivalry among foreign powers in Africa has become a major factor shaping peace and security in Africa, the current crisis in the global order may also manifest in various forms by affecting looming crisis and existing security hotspots.

It is against this background that the Permeant Mission of Kenya to the African Union and Amani Africa are jointly organizing this event to bring various stakeholders and prompt a discussion on how the current crisis intersects with and affects the peace and security situation in Africa and how Africa should position itself in the international order at a time of such extraordinary crisis. The event is also timely as it takes place ahead of the commencement of the mandate of the newly elected members of the PSC. During the occasion Amani Africa will also launch a special report analyzing the major peace and security issues in Africa as the AU marks 20 years since its inauguration in 2002.

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