Anthoni van Nieuwkerk
holds an MA in political science from the University of Johannesburg and a PhD in international relations from the University of the Witwatersrand. He leads the University of the Witwatersrand’s Centre for Defence and Security Management and is the assistant dean (research)...
- Turkey as a humanitarian actor: the critical cases of Somalia and Syria
Pinar Tank , 17 March 2015
- Africa’s pre-eminent peacemaker? An appraisal of South Africa’s peacemaking role in the Democratic Republic of Congo
Milfrid Tonheim , Gerrie Swart , 6 February 2015
- African development: what role do the rising powers play?
Elling N. Tjønneland , 23 January 2015
- Conflicting dilemmas: economic growth, natural resources and indigenous populations in South America
María A. Guzmán-Gallegos , 3 November 2014
- Brazil’s involvement in peacekeeping operations: the new defence-security-foreign policy nexus
Monica Hirst , Reginaldo Mattar Nasser , 30 September 2014
- The discursive articulation of the concept of the “rising power”: perceptions, stances and interests in Brazil, Russia and Turkey
Licínia Simão , Teresa Almeida Cravo , André Barrinha , Reginaldo Mattar Nasser , 24 September 2014
- South America’s economic and political landscape: recent developments and trends
Alcides Costa Vaz , 17 September 2014
South Africa and the African Peace and Security Architecture
Anthoni van Nieuwkerk, 26 March 2014
This report interprets South Africa’s contribution to the evolution and performance of the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) of the African Union (AU). It examines the evolution of APSA, provides an overview of the post-apartheid South African government’s Africa policy, and concludes with some insights derived from interviews with South African government officials and analysts.
The key finding is that the South African government displays paradoxical behaviour regarding APSA. On the one hand, it exercises considerable “soft” power and influence throughout Africa, which the report describes as “peace diplomacy”. To a large degree it also shaped the establishment of the AU and its APSA. On the other hand, South Africa underplays its current presence in APSA decision-making structures and processes, thereby undermining its ability to influence the strategic peace and security agendas of key multilateral bodies such as the Southern African Development Community, the AU and, by extension, the United Nations. Several factors underlie this phenomenon, including a tendency to over-extend the country’s diplomatic role. However, the report suggests that this is because of the South African government’s inability to give effect to a comprehensive national security policy framework that ought to guide its choices and behaviour regarding the African peace and security terrain.