AU Step Closer To Libya Solution

Zuma returned to South Africa on Saturday after attending the two day 17th African Union (AU) assembly session in Malabo Equatorial Guinea.
The role of the AU in bringing a solution to the crisis in Libya was “matter of fact”, Zuma said in a statement.

It was important for the AU Ad Hoc High Level Committee’s final decision to be discussed at length so all parties were in agreement. On Friday, the AU presented a plan to Libyan rebels to end their conflicts. Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi would be excluded from the negotiations.

The plan laid out steps for a ceasefire, national dialogue and transition to democracy.  During the AU assembly African leaders were also urged to adopt policies that created safe, decent and competitive employment opportunities for young people.

The decision was influenced by the 20 million young Africans seeking employment in a labour market that was not ready to receive such a high number.

“The youth embody the future of the continent and therefore have a role to play in pursuit of its integration agenda,” Zuma said.

“Given the challenges of illiteracy, unemployment, lack of skills, under empowerment, irrelevant education, lack of access to capital, poverty, diseases, including HIV and Aids and forced migration, it is important to mobilise the youth in our respective countries to focus on the task of development and nation building.”

Zuma hosted the AU ad hoc committee on Libya in Pretoria last week. The committee discussed the implementation of the AU roadmap on Libya.

The committee, which is chaired by the President of Mauritania, Mohamed Ould Abdel Azizhas, held interactions with the Libyan parties on three occasions, including with Gaddafi and the TNC leadership in Tripoli and Benghazi in April.

Other members are heads of state of the Republic of Congo, Mali, Uganda and South Africa, as well as the chairman of the AU Commission. In May Zuma met with Gaddafi in Libya to discuss the peace process. – Sapa