AMISOM officers complete training on Gender and Human Rights.

Mogadishu:-The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) Protection, Human Rights and Gender Unit has completed a two-day online training on the protection of civilians, gender, human rights, International Humanitarian Law, as well as humanitarian concepts in conflict and post-conflict contexts.

“This Protection, Human Rights and Gender training will hopefully provide better understanding of protection, international human rights law, International Humanitarian Law, gender and humanitarian issues so as to consolidate on the mission’s compliance obligations. The success or otherwise of your complying with all applicable laws while carrying out your duties will go a long way in determining AMISOM’s own success,” the Head of AMISOM, Ambassador Madeira, told the participants when he officially opened the training on Tuesday.

“It is my sincere hope that you will make the most of this training so that by the end of the course you would have been sufficiently equipped with knowledge and skills to lawfully carry out your mandate in Somalia particularly when it comes to protecting women, children and the vulnerable,” he added.

Ambassador Madeira reminded the officers that United Nations Security Council Resolution 2520 of May 29, 2020 “reaffirms the importance of AMISOM’s zero tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse, and in this regard requests the AU and Troop and Police Contributing Countries to screen personnel, undertake risk assessments, deliver all relevant training to personnel, to protect and support the relief and recovery of survivors who report abuse, carry out timely investigations into allegations, to hold perpetrators accountable and to repatriate units where there is credible evidence of widespread or systemic sexual exploitation or abuse.”

These and various other provisions, Ambassador Madeira said, underline the critical importance for AMISOM to conduct pre-deployment and in-mission trainings for its officers deployed to serve in Somalia. The 25 senior officers who underwent the training were selected from the military and police components of AMISOM, deployed to serve in Jowhar and Beletweyne in Hirshabelle State.

Covered during the training included Gender Concepts and Gender in Peace Support Operations, Tools for Implementing Gender Programming, Islam and the International Human Rights Law, Humanitarian Concepts in Conflict and Post-Conflict Contexts and Protection of Women and Children.

The Senior Human Rights Advisor to the Head of AMISOM, Omar Alasow, urged the officers to share what they had learnt with their colleagues in the sectors where AMISOM operates.

“This training was to enhance understanding of the issues discussed, and to also build the capacity of these officers so that they can disseminate what they have learnt to their colleagues in the sectors, and to the Somali Security Forces with who they have joint operations,” Alasow said.

Bertha Bamba, from the Ugandan police contingent, said the invaluable knowledge gained from the training was going to help her, and other officers, to effectively carryout their duties during their period of deployment in Somalia.

“Gender, protection of civilians and human rights, among others, are important tools to know as we do our work in this mission. We had excellent facilitators in

Mr Kareem Adebayo, Ms Gloria Jaase, Ms Stella Maranga, Ms Ulrike Kahbila Mbuthon, Ms Mane Ahmed, Mr Jackson Sambia, Col. Jones Sarfo  and Dr Omar Alasow, who made the training interesting and worthwhile” Bamba said.