EU-backed African forces continued to make progress and anti-piracy operations were successful. There was also political progress in Somalia.
The consortium of organisations involved in Somalia – including the AU, the EU, and the UN – made major progress towards stabilising the country in 2012. But their gains remain fragile and could still be reversed. The EEAS has played a significant role in coordinating European strategy towards Somalia for some years, and in November 2011 the European Council adopted a new strategic framework for the Horn of Africa. The UK has taken a lead among member states and in February 2012 hosted a major intergovernmental conference at which EU and non-European governments pledged increased aid to the country.
The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) continued to mount successful operations against Islamist rebels in 2012. A Kenyan intervention early in the year significantly strengthened the force. The EU’s African Peace Facility (APF), which uses development funds to support African peace operations, provided a significant part of AMISOM’s budget in 2012. However, the APF will run out of funds if it is not replenished in 2013.
The EU runs a training mission to build up Somalia’s armed forces. There had been signs of waning enthusiasm in the EU for the operation, which was set to close at the end of 2012. In December, however, the European Council agreed to extend the mission by two years, with a new focus on offering strategic guidance rather than direct training. The EU also maintains a high-profile anti-piracy mission off the coast of Somalia (in parallel with NATO and other operations), which has been increasingly successful. There were fewer than 100 pirate attacks in 2012 – less than half the figure for 2011. In July, the European Council mandated a new mission, codenamed Nestor, to assist regional states build up their own maritime security capabilities, though this is not yet fully operational. Meanwhile, the UN, which has been involved in the Somalia conflict since the 1990s, moved political personnel into the country in January (a sign of increased security) and supported gradual but promising progress towards creating a representative government.
|Leaders: Austria - Belgium - Estonia - France - Germany - Ireland - Italy - Poland - Spain|
|Slackers: Cyprus - Denmark - Greece - Lithuania - Portugal - Romania|