Reaffirmation of Lake Tanganyika International Boundaries Kicks Off

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Africa's system of fresh-water lakes includes some of the most impressive in size and depth in the world.

Annitah Matsika
April 14, 2017

The African Union Commission (AUC) has embarked on plans to reaffirm international boundaries of Lake Tanganyika.

The delimitation and demarcation of land and maritime boundaries is in line with the decision by the 28th ordinary session of the Assembly of the Union for the extension of the deadline for the completion of the delimitation and demarcation of African boundaries by 2022.

This week, the AUC convened a Joint Technical meeting of the Lake Tanganyika riparian Member states; namely the Republic of Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the United Republic of Tanzania and the Republic of Zambia from 10-12 April 2017.

The objective of the meeting held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, was to agree on the methodology that would culminate in the reaffirmation of the international boundaries of Lake Tanganyika.

The invitation was also extended to the Republic of Malawi and the Republic of Mozambique to share their experiences in the delimitation of their boundary in Lake Malawi/Lake Nyassa.

Participants requested the African Union Commission through the AU Border Program (AUBP) to support capacity building efforts, agreed on an implementation roadmap and committed to finalize delimitation and reaffirmation process of the Lake Tanganyika within eighteen (18) months.

The AUBP vision is that of “a united, integrated Africa, with peaceful, open and prosperous borders”.

Consequently, AUBP’s three main areas of activity include: assistance to AU Member States in the delimitation, demarcation and reaffirmation of all African borders by 2022, the promotion of cross-border cooperation, and the development of the technical capacities of personnel in charge of delimitation, demarcation and cross-border cooperation exercises.

The Program contributes to the structural prevention of conflict through the delimitation and demarcation of borders and also offers a platform for the negotiated resolution of border disputes and the promotion of regional and continental integration through cross border cooperation.

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