Thirty-five military and police officers serving with the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS), have completed a two-day training on human rights and civilian protection in peacekeeping operations.
The workshop organised by the ATMIS Civilian Sector coordination Team for Sector Two and Six, is intended to deepen the officers’ knowledge of International Human Rights Law and International Humanitarian Law to help them protect and promote human rights through their work.
“This training is very important because it reinforces the African Union Accountability and Compliance Framework, which requires troops to adhere to International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law Frameworks in their operations,” said ATMIS Protection Officer Gloria Jaase during the closing of the training held in Dhobley, Lower Juba region.
Under the UN Security Council Resolution 2628(2022), all ATMIS uniformed components as well as Somali Security Forces (SSF) operating jointly with ATMIS are required to carry out their operations in full compliance with obligations under International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law.
Said Jaase; “As we interact with communities, we have to be careful not to violate their rights, because we are here to protect them, that is our mandate.”
The topics covered during the training included Protection of Civilians, Children and Armed Conflict, Protection of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, Gender Mainstreaming and Human Rights in the context of ATMIS operations. Others were the conduct and discipline and Civilian Casualty Tracking, Analysis, and Response Cell (CCTRAC).
ATMIS Sector Two Deputy Commander Col. Anda Safe urged the officers to apply the knowledge acquired in their daily duties to help the Mission fulfill its mandate ahead of its exit from Somalia in December 2024.
“The seminar was rich in content, interactive, pragmatic and it blended with the realities in the theatre of operations in Somalia, particularly in Sector Two Area of Responsibility (AOR),” said Col. Safe.
Lt. Col. Philip Conteh, the Chief CCTRAC officer, underscored the significance of recording civilian casualties in areas of operation and encouraged participants to apply the skills learned.
“We must track, correctly categorise, and create a database of all casualty actors, including Al-Shabaab, unknown armed groups, and all factions fighting in Somalia,” Lt. Col. Conteh told the participants.
Maj. Ruth Omedi, Sector Two Gender officer, described the training as an eye-opener, especially in dealing with gender issues in conflict areas.
“I applaud the effort made in bringing this training specifically to Dhobley so that we can gain more knowledge on human rights. We now have a better understanding of our role when it comes to matters dealing with civilians and human rights,” said Maj. Omedi, who has served with KDF for over 10 years.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS).
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African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) Officers Undergo Training on Human Rights and Civilian Protection
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