The Commission of the African Union (AU) and the Addis Ababa University, through the Institute for Peace and Security Studies – IPSS, concluded, today, 1 December 2012, in Addis Ababa, a colloquium on “Border Governance for African integration.

The colloquium, which started on 28 November 2012, brought together representatives of National Boundary Commissions from different African regions and other experts, as well as scholars and civil society organizations. The participants made a set of recommendations on how best to expedite the implementation of the AU Border Programme (AUBP), particularly with respect to the delimitation and demarcation of African borders, where such an exercise has not yet taken place, cross-border cooperation and resource mobilization. Particular emphasis was placed on the need to ensure that borders constitute bridges among African countries and people, and not barriers.

The participants agreed to establish a network of scholars and practitioners, to deepen knowledge on border issues on the continent and further support the AUPB. They also called for the inclusion of studies on border issues in the curricula of African universities.

It should be recalled that the AUBP was launched in June 2007, with the overall objective of contributing to structural conflict prevention and integration on the continent. As part of the implementation of the Programme, the AU, with the support of the German Technical Cooperation (GiZ), is assisting several African countries in border delimitation and demarcation, cross-border cooperation and capacity building.