African Union Executive Council 

The African Union Executive Council is a decision-making body of the AU that consists of the ministers of foreign affairs (or equivalent representatives) from AU member states. It is directly responsible to and monitors implementation of the policies of the AU Assembly. The Executive Council meets twice a year, with the possibility of additional (“extra-ordinary”) sessions when approved by a vote.

In general, the Executive Council takes action to (Articles 10-13, Constitutive Act of the African Union):

  • Coordinate and take decisions on policies in areas of common interest to AU member states, including:
    • Foreign trade
    • Energy, industry and mineral resources
    • Food, agricultural and animal resources, livestock production and forestry
    • Water resources and irrigation
    • Environmental protection, humanitarian action and disaster response and relief
    • Transport and communications
    • Insurance
    • Education, culture, health and human resources development
    • Science and technology
    • Nationality, residency and immigration matters
    • Social security, including the formulation of mother and child care policies, as well as policies relating to the disabled and the handicapped
    • Establishment of a system of African awards, medals and prizes
  • Delegate powers and functions to Specialised Technical Committees of the AU

How does it help tackle violence against women?

As a decision-making body of the AU, the Executive Council may adopt resolutions related to tackling gender-based violence. These resolutions may call for action within the AU system or call on AU member states to take action domestically.

Resolutions of the Executive Council related to violence against women include:

iconLockWant more? Visit the AU’s website to research other decisions and declarations adopted by the Executive Council that relate to eliminating violence against women