Leading through consensus: South Africa chairs the AU

SA should choose a few priorities for 2020 and ensure buy-in from key players on the continent.

South Africa will chair the African Union (AU) in 2020 while also serving as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. This will be an opportunity for South Africa to improve AU-UN relations and drive its priorities for the continent. However, it will have to show progress in the fight against xenophobia back home in order to achieve consensus at the level of the AU.

About the authors

Liesl Louw-Vaudran is a Senior Researcher at the ISS. She has written extensively about South African foreign policy and edits the ISS’s PSC Report that deals with the African Union’s Peace and Security Council.

Mohamed M Diatta is a Researcher with the African Peace and Security Dialogue programme at the ISS office in Addis Ababa, and a writer for the PSC Report.

Picture: Jacoline Schoonees/DIRCO

Development partners
This policy brief is funded by UK Aid. The ISS is also grateful for support from the members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the Hanns Seidel Foundation, the European Union and the governments of Canada, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the USA.
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