The African Union

The African Union (AU) was launched in Durban, South Africa on July 9, 2002 as a successor to the Organization of African Unity (OAU) and consists of 54 African states (Morrocco is the only African country that is not a member). Proposed by the former head of state of Libya, Muammar al-Gaddafi, the African Union is made up of both political and administrative bodies.

The main objectives of the AU are to accelerate the political and socio-economic integration of the continent; promote and defend African common positions on issues of interest to the continent and its peoples; achieve peace and security in Africa; and promote democratic institutions, good governance and human rights.

The AU arose because the OAU did little to protect the rights and liberties of African citizens from their own political leaders, often dubbing it the “Dictators Club”. To this effect, The AU has had several military interventions in member states such as the deployment of troops in Sudan for peacekeeping in Darfur conflict and peacekeeping missions to Somalia.
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