In the 1980s, faced with an increasing number of armed conflicts in their region and lacking viable regional mechanisms to effectively respond to these conflicts, the members of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) sought the assistance of the United Nations, and submitted a proposal, on 28 November 1986, which called for the establishment of an advisory committee on security questions in Central Africa.
On 6 December 1991, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution 46/37 B by which, inter alia, it welcomed the initiative taken by the Central African States and their request for the creation of an advisory committee under the auspices of the United Nations. Subsequently, on 28 May 1992, the Secretary-General established the United Nations Standing Advisory Committee on Security Questions in Central Africa, and designated the then Centre for Disarmament Affairs in the Department for Political Affairs to serve as the Secretariat of the Committee.
In March 2011, the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA), located in Libreville, Gabon, was inaugurated. UNOCA is backstopped at the United Nations Headquarters in New York by DPA. As a consequence, the Secretary-General has decided to transfer the secretariat functions of UNSAC from the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (ODA) to the Department of Political Affairs (DPA). ODA will continue to provide substantive inputs and support to the Committee’s specific work on matters related to disarmament and arms limitation. UNOCA will therefore organise the future Ministerial Meetings of UNSAC, starting from the 33rd, held in Bangui,Central African Republic, 5-9 December 2011.
For more information, please contact Ms. Alice Mungwa, Political Affairs Officer, DPA Africa II Division. Ms. Mungwa can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and 1 917 367 4787.
The Committee meets twice a year at the ministerial level. The agenda generally consists of a review of the geo-political situation in Central Africa, as well as a review of disarmament and arms limitation programmes in the sub-region. Some of its major achievements include the adoption of a non-aggression pact, a mutual assistance accord, a mechanism for early warning (MARAC), the Central African Multinational Force (FOMAC), the Council of Peace (COPAX), the Code of Conduct for Defence and Security Forces, and the recently concluded Central African Convention for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons, Their Ammunition and All Parts and Components That Can Be Used for Their Manufacture, Repair and Assembly (Kinshasa Convention).