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14th AU - EU Human Rights Dialogue and 8th Civil Society Seminar

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The 14th African Union (AU) - European Union (EU) Human Rights Dialogue took place on 12 October 2018 in Brussels, Belgium. The Dialogue was led by H.E. Mrs Minata Samate Cessouma, AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, and H.E. Mr. Stavros Lambrinidis, the EU Special Representative for Human Rights.

The Human Rights Dialogue offers a unique platform to reinforce already strong relations and cooperation between the EU and the AU based on universal human rights. In their Joint Communique, both organisations expressed determination to together address human rights and democracy issues on both continents.

The EU and AU discussed recent human rights developments in Africa and Europe and progress made by the AU human rights organs, determined to take further action on the ratification and implementation of Human Rights and democratic governance instruments. On Corruption and Human Rights, the two institutions commended the theme of the AU for 2018 "Winning the Fight against Corruption" and will continue collaboration in this area. The EU is ready to support AU efforts for a comprehensive human rights framework in AU Peace Support Operations and both sides reiterated their engagement to the Africa Governance Architecture. Both EU and the AU want to prevent and eliminate all forms of violence against girls and women, welcoming the African pillar of the EU-UN Spotlight Initiative.  Building on the engagement taken during the 5th AU-EU Summit in Abidjan 2017, both sides reiterated their commitment to identify joint actions against trafficking in human beings. The initiatives of the joint AU-EU-UN Taskforce to address the migrant situation in Libya will be taken forward.

Two meetings took place in advance to the dialogue, providing input. On 9-10 October, Civil Society Organisations met with youth representatives for the 8th AU-EU Civil Society Seminar on Human Rights to discuss Youth and Political Inclusion. The parties recognised the importance of engaging independent civil society in the processes on both continents. The EU and AU also agreed to continue their cooperation on election observation and welcomed the positive outcome of the 11 October high-level Conference on the future of international election observation.

The EU and the AU agreed to hold the next round of the Human Rights Dialogue in Africa in 2019.