Lessons for “Partnership Peacekeeping” from the African Union Mission in Somalia

Figure 1. The AMISOM model (Click for full graphic)

Figure 2. AMISOM’s force generation challenges (Click for full graphic)

Deployed to Mogadishu in March 2007, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) operates through a complicated and extensive system of partnerships. This has been referred to as the “AMISOM model” of “partnership peacekeeping.” While this specific configuration of forces and mechanisms is unlikely to be repeated, AMISOM remains the longest-standing case of a peace enforcement operation built on such international partnerships.

If the AU and UN are going to continue deploying missions into such difficult environments, AMISOM’s experience offers lessons for how partnership peacekeeping can work better. This report summarizes the main operational-level lessons across seven themes: force generation, logistics, security sector reform, protection of civilians, strategic communications, stabilization, and exit strategy. Many of these lessons have not been truly learned, internalized, and acted upon by the actors and organizations in question.