PEACE AND SECURITY COUNCIL 53RD MEETING

Date | 31 May, 2006

COMMUNIQUÉ

The Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU), following a public meeting opened to all other AU Member States and other concerned countries, held its 53rd meeting on 31 May 2006, under the chairmanship of Mr. Oluyemi Adeniji, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, in his capacity as representative of the country chairing the PSC for the month of May 2006, and decided as follows on the African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty (Treaty of Pelindaba):

The Council,

1. Takes note of the Information Note on the African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty (Treaty of Pelindaba) [PSC/PR/2/(LIII)] submitted by the Commission and the statement made by the Foreign Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria;

2. Recalls resolution CM/Res.1592(LXII) Rev.1 adopted by the OAU in June 1995, considering that the establishment of Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zones, especially in the Middle East, would enhance the security of Africa and viability of the African Nuclear- Weapon-Free Zone and endorsing the Pelindaba Treaty;

3. Expresses concern at the long delay in the entry into force of the Treaty and at the fact that, to date, only twenty (20) African countries have deposited their instruments of ratification with the AU Commission, while twenty-eight (28) instruments of ratification are required for the Treaty to enter into force;

4. Notes that Africa is the only one of the regions that have concluded Treaties on Nuclear Weapons-Free Zones where such an instrument has not yet come into force;

5. Recalls decision EX.CL/276 (VIII) adopted by the Executive Council at its 8th Ordinary Session, held in Khartoum, from 16 to 21 January 2006, and requests the Member States that have not yet done so to urgently sign and ratify the Treaty so that it could enter into force during this tenth year of its opening for signature;

6. Further recalls resolution CM/Res.1592(LXII) Rev.1, appealing to the international community and, in particular, the Nuclear Weapon States, to bring the necessary support to the Pelindaba Treaty, especially by their accession to the Protocols that concern them. Council urges the countries concerned to sign and ratify the three Protocols appended to the Treaty;

7. Requests the Chairperson of the Commission to take all necessary steps, including through the appointment of a Special Envoy, to speed up the entry into force of the Treaty and the signing and ratification by all those concerned of the three Protocols appended to the Treaty;

8. Pays tribute to the Federal Republic of Nigeria for continuing to promote the signature and ratification of the Pelindaba Treaty;

9. Decides to remain seized of the matter.