United Nations


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

24 October 1995


Fiftieth session
Agenda item 71 (b)


Report of the Secretary-General


1.  By its  resolution 49/76 C  of 15  December 1994, the General  Assembly,
inter alia, requested  me to submit to it  at its fiftieth session a  report
on the  work of  the Standing Advisory  Committee on  Security Questions  in
Central Africa.  The  present report,  focusing  on  the sixth  and  seventh
ministerial meetings of the Committee, is in fulfilment of that request.

2.   Both meetings were  held at Brazzaville, the first from  20 to 24 March
and  the second from 28 August  to 1 September  1995.  Mr. Wilfrid de Souza,
Director of the Africa  II Division of the Department of Political  Affairs,
and  Mr.  Alioune  Blondin  Beye,  my   Special  Representative  in  Angola,
represented  me and  at the  sixth  and  seventh meetings,  respectively and
delivered a message on  my behalf.  A  message from the Secretary-General of
the Organization of African  Unity was delivered at each of the meetings  by
his representative.   Both meetings were  chaired by  His Excellency General
Joachim Yhombi Opango, Prime Minister and head of Government of the Congo. 

3.  At the sixth meeting the following officers  were elected to conduct the
work  of the Committee for a  period of one year:  Congo, President; Angola,
First  Vice-President;  Zaire,  Second  Vice-President;  Equatorial  Guinea,


4.   During the sixth  and the seventh  ministerial meetings, the  Committee
focused its  work on  the following main areas:   (a) review of  the Central
African geopolitical and security  situation; (b) consideration of the study
on the

95-28973 (E)   301095  311095/...

 typology of  the sources  of crises  and conflicts  in Central Africa;  (c)
consideration of  the draft  protocol on  mutual assistance  on defence  and
security matters and of the draft statute of  a model unit for peace-keeping
operations in  Central Africa; (d) consideration  of the  establishment of a
non-permanent general  staff for  crisis management in  Central Africa;  and
(e) consideration of a draft budget for the Committee.

A.  Review of the geopolitical and security situation
    in Central Africa                               

5.  It has  become an established practice for  the Committee to  review the
geopolitical  and  security  situation  in  the  subregion  at  each  of its
meetings with  a view  to seeking  practical ways  and  means of  addressing
existing  or  potentially  conflictual problems  in  each  of the  countries

6.  After an exchange of views on  the subject, the Committee noted that the
security situation in Central Africa had  improved somewhat since last year.
It observed, however,  that Burundi and  Rwanda continued to  be sources  of
much concern.  The delegation of  Rwanda expressed reservations with  regard
to that assessment of the situation in the country.

7.   The  Committee welcomed  the adoption  on  28  August 1995  of Security
Council  resolution  1012  (1995),  on  the  creation  of  an  international
commission of inquiry to establish the  facts relating to the  assassination
of the President  of Burundi on  21 October  1993, the  massacres and  other
related   serious  acts  of  violence  which  followed.    Furthermore,  the
Committee noted with  satisfaction the initiative  taken by the Organization
of African  Unity to promote  the restoration of  peace and  security in the
subregion, particularly  in Burundi, by means  of diplomatic  measures and a
military mission.

8.  The Committee  welcomed the steps taken  by the authorities in Cameroon,
the Central  African Republic  and Chad  to halt  the activities  of highway
bandits.   It  also welcomed  the significant  progress  made  in Angola  in
implementing  the Lusaka Protocols.   It  welcomed the return to  a state of
constitutionality  in Sao  Tome and  Principe, following  the attempted coup
d'etat that had taken place in that country.

9.   The  Committee began  an  exchange of  views on  the  topic  of foreign
intervention  for humanitarian purposes in  the subregion on the  basis of a
paper  submitted by the  delegation of  Congo.  It decided  to defer further
consideration of the item to the eighth meeting.

10.   The question  of the  proliferation of light weapons  in the subregion
has been under constant consideration in the Committee.  The spread of  such
weapons, including among the civilian population  and other armed groups  in
the  countries  of the  subregion,  has  contributed  to  the existence  and
exacerbation  of  conflicts  in  the  area  and  undermined  the  efforts of
Governments to  ensure security, law  and order and sustainable development.
In the context of  the sixth ministerial meeting, a presentation was made on
this subject by Mr. William Eteki-Mboumoua,  former Secretary-General of the
Organization  of African  Unity, in  his  capacity as  head of  my  Advisory
Mission   on  the  Proliferation   of  Light  Weapons  in  the  Sahara-Sahel
subregion.  The Committee  has decided, in this connection, to convene at  a
future  date a  meeting of  the Ministers  of  Defence  and the  Interior of
member States to examine the issues involved in greater depth.

11.   Discussions have  been  held on  the  subject  of a  subregional  arms
register  and  on  the  need  for  promoting transparency.    The  need  for
effective control  of the illicit flow  of arms has  also been expressed  in
this context.   Many believed  that the  establishment of  an arms  register
within the Committee that  would take into account data such as force levels
and  light weapons  would be  a valid  contribution to  the existing  United
Nations Register  of Conventional  Arms.  In  the view of  many delegations,

the  Register in its  present form  is too restrictive in  the categories of
weapons with which it is concerned.

12.    At  its  seventh  meeting,  the  Committee  adopted  the  Brazzaville
Declaration  on Cooperation  for Peace and  Security in Central  Africa.  In
the  Declaration,   member  States   express  their  deep  concern   at  the
persistence of tensions and violence  in the subregion and  outline a number
of measures aimed  at improving the situation.   These measures  include the
holding  of one of  the Committee's  forthcoming meetings  at United Nations
Headquarters in order to  allow for a broader  exchange of views with United
Nations  organs  and  bodies involved  in the  search  for solutions  to the
problems of  the subregion.   The  text of  the Declaration  is attached  as
Annex I to the present report.

B.  Review of the draft study on the typology of sources
    of crises and conflict                             

13.   The typology, based on a study carried out by Cameroon and Chad at the
request of  the Committee,  was adopted at  the sixth meeting.   The  study,
which is  attached as  annex II to the  present report, draws on  the recent
experiences of  the countries  of Central Africa  with regard to  sources of
tensions,   crises  and   conflicts  at   the  domestic,   inter-State   and
international levels.

C.  Draft protocol on mutual assistance on defence and
    security matters and the statute of a model unit 
    specializing in peace-keeping missions           

14.   At the  seventh meeting  the delegations of Congo  and Zaire submitted
the study they  had been  requested to  carry out at  the fourth meeting  in
1994.   The Committee  took note  of the  draft text  submitted  by the  two
countries and deferred consideration  on it to  the eighth meeting in  order
to allow member States the opportunity to study it in depth.

15.   With regard  to the  statute of  a model  unit specializing in  peace-
keeping operations,  to be  established within  the armed  forces of  member
States, the Committee  adopted the terms of  reference proposed by Congo and
Zaire at the sixth  meeting.  It strongly  encouraged other member States to
proceed with  the establishment  of such  units, following  the examples  of
Equatorial Guinea, Chad and  Zaire.  Such units,  it was pointed  out, could
be  made available for  peace-keeping operations  when needed, especially in
the  subregion.   The  Secretary-General  was  requested  to provide  United
Nations assistance in training personnel for the units.

D.  Consideration of the establishment of a non-permanent
    general staff for crisis management                 

16.   At its seventh  meeting the  Committee completed its  consideration of
the  item, taking into  account in  particular the study carried  out on the
topic by the delegation of Gabon.   It adopted the proposal and assigned the
task of gathering information and data on crises to the national  committees
set  up in each  member State to follow  up the work of  the Committee.  The
Bureau of the Committee was charged  with the responsibility of coordinating
the work of the national committees in this field.

E.  Consideration of the budget of the Bureau

17.  The Committee commended the efforts made by the delegation of Congo  to
prepare  a  draft budget  for  the  Bureau  of  the  Committee, following  a
recommendation made  at the sixth meeting.   The  consideration and adoption
of  the budget  estimate  was  postponed to  the  eighth meeting.    In  the
meantime, a trust fund  in the amount of 11 million CFA francs, or 1 million

from  each State, was opened so  that the President  of the Bureau could, as
called for by  the Committee, undertake  the missions  of solidarity in  the
countries  in conflict  in the  subregion.   It  was  decided that  the fund
should  be  endowed  by  31  March  1996 and  should  be  open  to voluntary
contributions from member States and any  other interested donors within  or
outside the region.


18.  Deep-seated  problems continue  to afflict Central Africa,  threatening
its stability  and its future.   The two meetings  of the  Committee in 1995
again offered a valuable opportunity for  States members of the Committee to
take decisions  which, if  combined with  the requisite  political will  and
practical measures, should strengthen the chances  of peace and reduce those
of war in the subregion.

19.   It  is vital,  therefore, for  the Governments  concerned to translate
into concrete actions their stated commitments  to peace and cooperation and
the  various recommendations and  decisions they  have adopted  to that end.
The  Brazzaville  Declaration  on  Cooperation  for  Peace  and  Security in
Central  Africa, adopted  at  the Committee's  seventh  meeting,  represents
another  important step forward  in the  Committee's quest for  a better and
brighter future for  Central Africa.   But its  real value and  significance
will be  determined by  the extent  to which  the measures  it contains  are

20.   The high cost of  conflicts in the subregion, both  financially and in
human  terms,  underlines  the  need  for  bolder  steps  to  prevent future
turmoil.  This will require patience, moderation  and tolerance on the  part
of all, both at  the domestic  and at the inter-State  levels.  The role  of
the  United Nations  has  been to  provide  a mechanism  through  which  the
countries of the area can seek to harmonize  their strategies for peace  and
mutual confidence.  The primary responsibility  for using that mechanism  to
good effect rests with the countries themselves.

21.   I   welcome the  responsibility and  seriousness shown by  the Central
African  countries in their  attempt to  deal with  the increasingly complex
and  multidimensional  nature   of  the  challenges  facing  the   subregion
including, in particular, the refugee and  other humanitarian aspects.  Many
of these countries, in particular Zaire,  have welcomed on their territories
large numbers of refugees uprooted by conflict in neighbouring  States.  The
growing problem of  refugees and displaced persons  in the subregion is  not
only  a   human  tragedy  but  also  a  potential  danger  to  security  and
sustainable  development.    It  must  be  addressed  in its  totality.    I
encourage Member States to  support the efforts of  my Special Envoy for the
Great Lakes  Region of Central  Africa, Ambassador Jose  Luis Jesus,  who is
carrying  out  consultations  on  preparations   for  the  convening   of  a
conference on security, stability and development in the area.

22.   I remain  convinced  that the  Committee  is  an instrument  that  can
contribute substantially  to the restoration of  peace and  security in this
part of  Africa. I remain concerned, however, about the  risk that continued
non-implementation of  decisions and measures agreed  upon by the  Committee
will impair its effectiveness.


Brazzaville Declaration on Cooperation for
Peace and Security in Central Africa

1.  The  seventh ministerial meeting of  the Standing Advisory  Committee on
Security Questions in Central  Africa was held from 31 August to 1 September
1995 at Brazzaville, and examined the problems of peace and security in  the
subregion of Central Africa.

2.   The  Ministers  expressed  their deep  concern  at the  persistence  of
tensions and violence in  the subregion of Central Africa.  They noted  that
this dangerous  situation  has led  to  tremendous  losses in  human  lives,
considerable   material   damage  and   unspeakable   suffering  among   the
population, including the massive movement of  refugees.  They stressed  the
fact that  the resulting  insecurity undermines  the development efforts  of
the Governments  and peoples  of  the subregion  despite their  considerable
natural resources.

3.   The Ministers  agreed that  the proliferation  of arms  even among  the
civilian populations,  including armed  gangs, was  the main  factor in  the
violence and insecurity prevailing  in the countries of the subregion.  They
also agreed  that socio-political  problems, economic  difficulties and  the
problems  of  refugees and  displaced  persons  were  exacerbating  tensions
within and among States.

4.    The Ministers  recognized  that  the  primary  responsibility for  the
maintenance  of  peace  and  security  in  the  subregion  devolved  on  the
Governments  and peoples of  the countries  concerned.   They encouraged the
efforts being  made in this  direction by  the countries  concerned.   While
welcoming the contribution of  other States of the subregion to the  process
of  national   reconciliation  and  re-establishment   of  peace  in   these
countries,  they   underlined  the   importance  of  the   support  of   the
international community as a whole.

5.  They once  again condemned the acts of genocide and atrocious  massacres
committed  in  Rwanda from  April  to mid-July  1994,  the acts  of  extreme
violence  in Burundi  and all other violation  of international humanitarian
law and reaffirmed  their Governments' commitment and determination to spare
no effort to prevent other manifestations of violence.

6.   The Ministers reaffirmed  their renewed support  to the United  Nations
and expressed  their profound gratitude for  its tireless  efforts at peace-
building, peace-keeping and  peacemaking and for its emergency  humanitarian
assistance to  the subregion,  in Africa  and  throughout the  world.   They
conveyed their congratulations to the States  members of the Committee  that
participated  in United  Nations  peace-keeping operations,  in  particular,
Cameroon,  Congo, Chad and  Zaire.   They especially  welcomed and expressed
their support for the deployment of  the United Nations Angola  Verification
Mission  (UNAVEM III) and  the initiation  of operations  to consolidate the
historic peace agreements between the Government  of Angola and the National
Union for  the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA), which  were mediated by
the  United Nations.   They  also expressed  their support  for the  current
United Nations peace efforts in Burundi and Rwanda.
  7.   The Ministers  also  agreed that  lasting solutions  to the  manifold
challenges  facing  Angola,  Burundi  and Rwanda  and  the  Central  African
subregion in  general  could  be  found  only  in  the  framework  of  close
cooperation among the  international community, the Organization of  African
Unity (OAU) and the  subregional institutions both  directly and  indirectly
concerned.   They particularly welcomed the  recent visit  of United Nations
Secretary-General  Boutros  Boutros-Ghali to  Angola,  Burundi,  Rwanda  and
Zaire, which helped further  to open up prospects  for a lasting solution to
the conflicts in the subregion.

8.  The Ministers  launched an appeal for urgent, effective actions aimed at
finding lasting, concrete  solutions to  the disturbing problem of  refugees
and  displaced  persons  in  the  subregion.    They  expressed  their  deep
appreciation for the humanitarian  assistance provided to  the refugees  and
displaced persons by  the United Nations and non-governmental  organizations
and host  countries.    They  also  noted  the  heavy  burden  on  the  host
countries, especially in the socio-economic, ecological and security  areas.
Referring to  General Assembly  resolution 49/24  of 2  December 1994,  they
reiterated their  support for  Zaire's request for  special assistance  from
the  international community, to deal  with the problems caused  by the flow
of refugees into its  territory.  The Ministers considered that the  problem
of refugees,  with Africa  being  in first  place  as  the region  with  the

largest number of refugees,  is a humanitarian  challenge and called on  the
United Nations,  the countries  of origin  and  the host  countries to  work
together to ensure that refugees are not used  for political purposes or  to
destabilize the  States of  the subregion,  and to  seek ways  and means  to
repatriate them  to their countries of  origin.  To  that end the  Ministers
gave a  mandate to the  officers of  the Committee to carry  out missions of
solidarity to  the countries  concerned  as  soon as  possible in  order  to
contribute to the process of re-establishing  and strengthening peace in the

9.   The  Ministers  stressed  the fact  that  the prime  objective  of  the
countries of  the subregion is  to improve the  standard of  living of their
peoples.   They recognized  that this will be possible  only in a climate of
peace  and stability  both  within and  among States.    To this  end,  they
underlined  that   a  close   relationship  exists   between  security   and
sustainable  development.   In view  of  the  considerable support  from the
United Nations  and the international community  for the  efforts to promote
security  and development  in the  subregion,  and the  urgent need  for the
subregion  to  meet the  challenges facing  them  in  these two  fields, the
Ministers decided  to  hold one  of  their  forthcoming meetings  at  United
Nations Headquarters in order to allow for a  broader exchange of views with
the organs of the United Nations system.

10.  The Ministers entrusted the officers of  the Committee with the mission
of   organizing  a   subregional  conference   on  the   topic   "Democratic
institutions and peace in Central Africa".

11.   Lastly, the Ministers noted  that their meeting was taking  place at a
time when  the United Nations was  celebrating its  fiftieth anniversary and
reaffirmed  their  countries' commitment  to  the  purposes  and  principles
enshrined in the Charter.

                                                  Brazzaville,  1  September


  Bearing in mind  the recent  experience of  the countries  of the  Central
African subregion, a number of sources of tension, crisis  and conflict have
been  identified, especially  at  the  internal and  inter-State levels  and
outside the subregion.

I.  Sources of internal conflict

  At the internal level, the main sources of conflict are as follows:

  (a)     Exacerbation  of   ethnic,  cultural,   religious  and   political

  (b)  Arms proliferation among population  groups, leading to banditry  and

  (c)   Early  experience  with  democracy  and democratic  management,  and
failure to respect minority rights;

(d)  Irresolute desires for secession;

(e)  Coups d'etat;

(f)  Armed opposition movements;

(g)  Widening civil wars;

(h)  Major disasters;

(i)  Poverty;

(j)  Social injustice.

II.  Sources of inter-State conflict

  At the inter-State level, the main sources of conflict are as follows:

  (a)   Border disputes,  especially those  relating to  the delimitation of
borders and to neighbourly relations;

  (b)    Problems   concerning  refugees,  displaced  persons  and   illegal

  (c)  Desire for power.

 III.  Sources of conflict from outside the subregion

Sources of conflict from outside the subregion include the following:

  (a)  Aggression of all kinds by third States;

  (b)  Interference of all kinds by third States;

  (c)  Deployment of forces;

  (d)  Desire for power.



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