30 June 1997: Security Council establishes MONUA; succeeding
three pior United Nations peacekeeping missions in Angola
On 30 June 1997, by adopting resolution 1118 (1997), the Security Council established MONUA, to be operational as of 1 July 1997. MONUA had been preceeded in Angola by three other UN peacekeeping operations:
(January 1989--May 1991)
verified the total withdrawal of Cuban troops from Angola;
UNAVEM I I
(June 1991--February 1995)
verified the peace arrangements agreed by the Angolan Government and UNITA, in accordance with the Peace Accords for Angola, and was later called upon to observe and verify the elections held in September 1992. In the wake of UNITA's refusal to accept the results of the elections, fighting broke out once again between Government and UNITA forces. UNAVEM II continued its presence in Angola at reduced strength;
(February 1995--June 1997)
was established following the signing of the Lusaka Protocol in November 1994. The Agreement, which marked a new stage in the Angolan peace process, set forth a comprehensive implementation timetable and laid out the United Nations role in helping the parties implement that timetable. Commenting on developments during the final phase of UNAVEM III, the Secretary-General noted that the formation of the Government of Unity and National Reconciliation (GUNR), the return of UNITA deputies to the National Assembly, the beginning of the normalization of State administration and the demobilization of ex-combatants were important steps towards the implementation of the Lusaka Protocol.
17 October 1997: Secretary-General's report says road towards
lasting peace remains difficult, notes lack of significant progress
The road towards lasting peace in Angola remained difficult, however, with tensions in northern regions underscoring the unsettled situation. In his report to the Security Council of 17 October 1997, S/1997/807 the Secretary-General noted the lack of significant progress over the preceding months. He recommended that the Council postpone the withdrawal of UN military units and that it extend the mandate of MONUA until 31 January 1998. On 29 October 1997, in resolution 1135(1997) , the Council agreed with these recommendations. In addition, deploring UNITA's failure to comply fully with its obligations under the Lusaka Protocol, the Council decided to impose sanctions targetting UNITA, including restrictions on the travel of UNITA personnel.
12 January 1998: Secretary-General reports normalization process encounters
difficulties; Security Council, on 27 January, extends MONUA until 30 April 1999
On 12 January 1998, the Secretary-General reported to the Security Council S/1998/17 that the normalization process in Angola encountered serious political and logistical difficulties, and important tasks remained in order for the parties to conclude the peace process. He also noted that the plan for downsizing the MONUA military component was being implemented. He nevertheless felt that the military situation warranted retaining a military task force of up to four infantry companies, whose total strength, including support troops, would not exceed 910 personnel. An additional 45 military staff officers and 90 military observers would be also be retained. On 27 January 1998, in adopting resolution 1149(1998) , the Security Council approved these recommendations and extended MONUA's mandate until 30 April 1998.
29 April 1998: Council resolution 1164(1998) extends MONUA through 30 June 1998
MONUA's mandate was again extended when the Council adopted, on 29 April resolution 1164(1998) In approving MONUA's continued operation in Angola until 30 June 1998, the Council welcomed progress achieved in the peace process, but stressed the urgent need for the parties, and in particular UNITA, to complete their obligations, in accordance with the approved timetable. The Council also endorsed the Secretary-General's recommendation to complete the withdrawal of all military personnel, with the exception of one infantry company, support units and 90 military observers no later than 1 July 1998.
12 June 1998: Security Council, acting under Charter Chapter VII, freezes UNITA
funds and property; prevents all official contacts with UNITA leadership
in areas of Angola to which State administration has not been extended
Despite all efforts, however, the situation in the country continued to be tense. On 12 June 1998, the Security Council took action in resolution 1173(1998) condemning UNITA and holding its leadership responsible for its failure to implement fully its obligations contained in the Lusaka Protocol and relevant Security Council resolutions. The Council demanded that UNITA fully cooperate without conditions in the immediate extension of State administration throughout the national territory, including in particular in Andulo, Bailundo, Mungo and Nharea; and demanded that UNITA cooperate fully with MONUA in the verification of its demilitarization and that UNITA stop any attacks on the personnel of MONUA, international personnel, the authorities of GURN, including the police, and the civilian population. Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter it decided that all States, except Angola, freeze funds and property belonging to UNITA and prevent all official contacts with the UNITA leadership in areas of Angola to which State administration has not been extended.
17 June 1998: Military actions by UNITA result in dramatic humanitarian and
human rights situation: 1,3 million people, or ten per cent of population displaced
The Secretary-General reported on 17 June 1998 to the Security Council S/1998/524 that despite strenuous efforts of his Special Representative Mr. Alioune Blondin Beye, no progress was achieved in the implementation of one of the last major pending tasks under the Lusaka Protocol, namely, the normalization of State administration throughout the country. The reporting period was also marked by a dangerous deterioration of the security situation in various parts of the country, including armed attacks against villages, local government authorities, as well as United Nations and other international personnel. Acts of banditry, new minelaying activities, and troop movements also increased. The incidents resulted in the loss of many lives and in the destruction of property, as well as the displacement of thousands of civilians. These worrisome developments affected 8 out of the 18 Angolan provinces and seriously undermined the progress achieved in the peace process.
The military actions launched by UNITA elements also resulted in dramatic deterioration of humanitarian and human rights situation in the country. The total number of displaced people in Angola climbed to almost 1.3 million, representing some 10 per cent of the country's population. In addition, thousands of Angolans fled the country for the Democratic Republic of the Congo. An influx of Angolan refugees was also reported in Zambia and Namibia. The Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Mr.Sergio Vieira de Mello, visited Angola between 18 and 21 May 1998 to support the humanitarian community and review the role of the Humanitarian Assistance Coordination Unit in responding to the emergency humanitarian situation. The Secretary-General joined the Security Council in its strong appeal to UNITA to cooperate with the United Nations in the immediate extension of State administration through the national territory and recommended that the mandate of MONUA be extended for two months, until 31 August 1998, and that the strength of the mission be maintained at the existing level.
24 and 29 June 1998: Council resolutions 1176(1998) and 1180(1998) impose
further sanctions against UNITA; order withdrawal of MONUA's military component;
MONUA extended through 31 August 1998
By adopting, on 24 June 1998, resolution 1176(1998), the Council decided that further sanctions against UNITA as provided for in resolution 1173 (1998) should come into force without further notice at 00.01 Eastern Daylight Time on 1 July 1998, unless the Council decided, on the basis of a report by the Secretary-General, that UNITA had fully complied with all its obligations under that resolution. In a further decision, adopted on 29 June as resolution 1180(1998), the Council decided to resume the withdrawal of the military component of MONUA in accordance with resolution 1164(1998) of 29 April 1998 as soon as conditions permitted; and requested the Secretary-General to reconsider the deployment of the additional civilian police observers authorized under that resolution. By resolution 1180(1998), MONUA was further extended through 31 August 1998.
26 June 1998: Alioune Blondin Beye - Special Representative of Secretary-General;
five MONUA staff, two pilots; lose lives in tragic plane crash
The Secretary-General noted in a 6 August 1998 report to the Security Council S/1998/723 that after two months of frustrating delays, the Angolan Government and UNITA held high-level consultations in Andulo on 18 and 19 June 1998, which led to a number of understandings. However, UNITA again failed to set specific dates for the extension of State administration to its four strongholds of Andulo, Bailundo, Mungo and N'Harea. Shortly before his tragic death, the Secretary-General's then Special Representative, Mr. Alioune Blondin Beye, held intensive consultations with President Jos Eduardo dos Santos and the UNITA leader, Mr. Jonas Savimbi, in order to ensure the earliest completion of the Lusaka Protocol. On 22 June 1998, Mr. Beye met in Andulo with Mr. Savimbi, who reiterated his earlier promise to proceed with normalization before 30 June. Accordingly, and with the consent of the Government of Angola, on 24 June, the Security Council adopted resolution 1176 (1998), by which it postponed, until 1 July 1998, the entry into force of the additional measures stipulated in resolution 1173 (1998). On 26 June 1998, Mr. Beye left Luanda to consult with several leaders of the region, in yet another effort to move the Angolan peace process forward. After holding consultations with the Presidents of Gabon and Togo, his aircraft crashed, while making an approach to land in Abidjan airport. All eight people on board, including Mr. Beye, five MONUA staff and two pilots, tragically lost their lives in the accident. The death of Mr. Beye occurred at a critical phase in the peace process.
In the following weeks, the military and security situation in the country further deteriorated and the risks of a resumption of full-scale hostilities increased significantly. UNITA forces continued to threaten FAA and ANP in Lunda Sul, Lunda Norte, Moxico, Uige and Cuanza Norte Provinces. Evidently, UNITA maintained a significant military capability, despite its past declarations on the demilitarization of its forces. On many occasions, UNITA "residual" troops were identified as being responsible for attacks on villages and towns, as well as ambushes on major roads. There were also incidents of selective killing and kidnapping in order to intimidate the population and dissuade it from cooperating with government authorities.
Owing to the prevailing insecurity, the downsizing of MONUA's military component was temporarily suspended. However, the Portuguese logistic company of 93 personnel was repatriated in July, as requested by its national authorities. The mission's strength thus stood at that time at 728 military personnel, composed of 414 troops belonging to three infantry companies, 185 military support personnel, 37 staff officers and 92 military observers. The Secretary-General called on the Government and, in particular, UNITA to renew their efforts towards national reconciliation, to cease the exchange of threats and war rhetoric and to initiate immediately confidence-building measures, both at the national and local levels. These measures should include the expeditious reactivation of the joint mechanisms in the provinces. Practical steps should also be taken to disengage the military forces on the ground, under effective MONUA verification. Alternatively, the United Nations would be compelled to reconsider its deployment on the ground.
13 August 1998: Council extends MONUA until 5 September 1998
By adopting, on 13 August 1998, resolution 1190(1998) , the Security Council
extended the mandate of MONUA until 15 September 1998 and demanded that UNITA cease its reoccupation of localities where State administration was established and stop attacks by its members on civilians, GURN authorities, including police, and United Nations and international personnel. In the following months, the peace process in Angola continued to be stalled. UNITA was still refusing to implement its most important commitments under the Lusaka Protocol, including the demilitarization of its forces and the extension of State administration throughout the country. Mutual mistrust between the Government and UNITA remained pervasive. The dialogue between the parties ceased. The security situation throughout the country remained precarious, in particular in the northern and north-eastern regions where the Government and UNITA forces continued to conduct extensive military operations. The renewed fighting reported in several provinces led to the further deterioration of security conditions there. As a result of the prevailing insecurity, the free circulation of people and goods was impeded in many areas of Angola.
15 September, 15 October 1998: MONUA extended by Council resolutions
1195(1998) and 1202(1998); parties called upon to seek political settlement
During September-October, the Security Council extended the mandate of MONUA on two occasions by its resolutions 1195(1998) of 15 September and 1202(1998) of 15 October -- on that date through 3 December. The Council reiterated that the primary cause of the crisis in Angola and of the impasse in the peace process was the failure by the leadership of UNITA to comply with its obligations and demanded that UNITA withdraw immediately from territories which it had reoccupied through military action. It also stressed that there could be no military solution to the conflict in Angola and called upon the Government of Angola and in particular UNITA to seek a political settlement.
23 November 1998: Despite dangerous security situation, Secretary-General appeals to
international community to remain engaged in dissuading parties from returning to war
Notwithstanding those calls the situation in Angola continued to deteriorate. Despite the dangerous security situation in the country and the absence of any progress towards the implementation of the Lusaka Protocol, the Secretary-General felt that the international community should remain engaged in order to dissuade the parties, as far as possible, from a return to war. Accordingly, in his 23 November report S/1998/1110 to the Security Council, he proposed that the mandate of MONUA be extended for another short period of up to three months, on the understanding that if the security situation were to become untenable, he would immediately revert to the Security Council and submit further recommendations, including, if necessary, the withdrawal of MONUA.
3 December 1998: Security Council extends MONUA until 26 Feburary 1999;
holds UNITA leadership in Andulo and Bailundo responsible for safety and security
of MONUA personnel at those locations
Adopting resolution 1213(1998) on 3 December 1998, the Security Council again extended MONUA until 26 Feburary 1999. The Council emphasized that the primary cause of the current crisis in Angola was the failure by the leadership of UNITA in Bailundo to comply with its obligations under the Acordos de Paz, the Lusaka Protocoand demanded that UNITA immediately commence with complete demilitarization of its forces and fully cooperate in the immediate and unconditional extension of State administration throughout the national territory. The resolution demanded that UNITA withdraw immediately from territories which it has reoccupied through military or other action; and called upon UNITA to cooperate fully and immediately with MONUA in the withdrawal of MONUA mission personnel from Andulo and Bailundo, holding the UNITA leadership in Bailundo responsible for their safety and security.
The Security Council reiterated concern at the continued deterioration of the humanitarian situation, especially the significant increase in the number of internally displaced persons and the increase in minelaying activity, calling on the Government and in particular UNITA to guarantee unconditionally the safety and freedom of movement of all international humanitarian personnel; to cooperate fully with international humanitarian organizations in the delivery of emergency relief assistance to affected populations, to cease minelaying activity, and to respect international humanitarian, refugee and human rights law. Stressing that there was no military solution to the conflict in Angola, it called upon the Government and UNITA to seek a peaceful resolution of the crisis. The Council endorsed the Secretary-General's recommendation to continue adjusting deployment and force structure of the Mission as necessary.
4 December 1998: Security Council holds UNITA President Jonas Savimbi personally
responsible for safety and security of MONUA personnel in Andulo and Bailundo
In a Press Statement by President of the Security Council issued on 4 December following consultations among Council members SC/6607 , the Security Council expressed its grave concern over the safety and security of MONUA personnel located in Andulo and Bailundo. It took note of the statement of the Secretary-General of 4 December 1998, saying that the leadership of UNITA in Bailundo has refused to provide the necessary clearance for United Nations aircraft to land in Andulo and Bailundo to evacuate these personnel. The Council demanded that UNITA permit the immediate and unconditional departure of the MONUA personnel from Andulo and Bailundo. Reaffirming its resolution 1213(1998) of 3 December, it held UNITA President Jonas Savimbi personally responsible for their safety, security and freedom of movement.
7 December 1998: Secretary-General welcomes release of 14 MONUA
peacekeepers from Andula and Bailundo team-sites
After the successful evacuation, on 7 December, by plane of the MONUA personnel in Andulo and Bailunda, the Spokesman for the Secretary-General issued the same day a Statement SG/SM/6820-AFR/120 on behalf of the Secretary-General, who expressed relief to learn that, after a long ordeal, the 14 United Nations peacekeepers who had been deployed to UNITA held areas in Andulo and Bailundo were successfully withdrawn after the UNITA leadership in Bailundo eventually gave clearance for the landing of United Nations aircraft to pick them up. They were currently in safety at MONUA's regional headquarters in Huambo. The Secretary-General was encouraged that reason has prevailed in the very difficult situation involving MONUA personnel in these two team-sites, and that the principles guiding peacekeeping operations have been upheld. As these United Nations peacekeepers were in safety, the Secretary-General reiterates the appeal of the international community to the parties to exercise the utmost restraint so as not to endanger the lives of MONUA and other international personnel operating in Angola, as well as innocent civilians.
23 December 1998: Security Council emphasizes Angolan Government and
UNITA must guarantee safety and freedom of movement for MONUA staff
The President of the Security Council released on 23 December 1998 Statement S/PRST/1998/37 on behalf of the Council, deploring the serious deterioration of the situation in Angola and calling for an
immediate cessation of hostilities. In this context, the Council urged the Government of Angola and UNITA to cooperate fully with the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, including by facilitating his contacts with all those key to reviving the stalled peace process and to implementing the Lusaka Protocol. Concern was expressed concern at the public statements blaming the United Nations for the recent aggravation of the security situation in the country. The Council emphasized that both the Government and UNITA had an obligation to guarantee the safety and freedom of movement of MONUA personnel as well as humanitarian workers to permit an independent assessment of the needs of the civilian population.
31 December 1998: Security Council, expressing strongest concern at crash of
UN flight 806 and fate of passengers and crew; demands immediate UNITA cooperation
After the crash and disappearance of UN flight 806 over UNITA-controlled territory in central Angola and disappearance of another aircraft, the Security Council demanded by resolution 1221(1999) of 31 December 1998, that the leader of UNITA, Mr. Jonas Savimbi, immediately respond to the appeals from
the United Nations and guarantee the security and access necessary for, and assist in, the search for and rescue of possible survivors of the plane incidents in territory controlled by UNITA. The Council equally called upon the Government of Angola to cooperate as appropriate. It condemned the lack of effective actions to determine the fate of the crews and passengers of the aircraft and called for an immediate and objective international investigation of these incidents and for UNITA to facilitate such an investigation.The Council reaffirmed the need for compliance with measures against UNITA contained in resolutions 864(1993), 1127(1997), and 1173(1998), imposed under Chapter VII of the Charter.
12 January 1999: Security Council condemns downing of two UN aircraft; demands that
UNITA leader Savimbi cooperate immediately in search and rescue of possible survivors
After the downing on 2 January 1999 of a second United Nations-chartered
aircraft over territory controlled by UNITA, bringing to six the number of aircraft lost in this area in recent months, the Council - acting under Chapter VII of the Charter - demanded in resolution
1221(1999) of 12 January 1999, that all such attacks cease immediately; reaffirming its resolve to establish the truth about the circumstances of and to determine the responsibility for the downing of the two UN aircraft and the loss under suspicious circumstances of other commercial aircraft over UNITA controlled territory through an immediate and objective international investigation, and called especially on UNITA to cooperate fully with and to facilitate such an investigation. The Council concluded that the leader of UNITA, Mr. Jonas Savimbi, has not complied with the demands contained in its resolution 1219(1998) of 31 December 1998, and reiterated its demand that he cooperate immediately and in good faith in the search for and rescue of possible survivors of the aircraft crashes. The Council also requested the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to provide all possible support to the investigation of those incidents as soon as conditions on the ground permitted.
17 January 1999: With peace process in Angola collapsed, Secretary-General
recommends termination of MONUA folowing expiration of mandate on 26 February
Observing that the peace process in Angola has collapsed and the country found itself in a state of war, Secretary-General Kofi Annan stated in his 17 January 1999 report to the Security Council (S/1999/49), that MONUA had no other option but to continue to reduce its presence and proceed with the orderly repatriation of UN personnel and property. Upon expiration of MONUA's mandate on 26 February, the United Nations would then proceed with the mission's technical liquidation. Citing the determination of the parties in Angola to test their fortunes on the battlefield, the steady worsening security situation and MONUA's inability to carry out its mandate, the Secretary-General assessed that the conditions for a meaningful United Nations peacekeeping role have ceased to exist. He noted that the Angolan Government did not support the extension of MONUA beyond its current mandate, which was to expire on 26 February 1999. All MONUA team sites and regional headquarters were to be withdrawn to the capital Luanda by mid-February and most of UN peacekeeping personnel repatriated by 20 March. The Secretary-General suggested retaining an infantry company of up to 200 personnel to protect UN property during the first months of liquidation.
The Secretary-General stressed, however, that the international community and the United Nations must not turn its back on the Angolan people. The humanitarian situation in the country, already critical, had the potential to develop into a full-scale catastrophe, and heavy fighting caused dire consequences for the civilian population. Thus, he intended to designate a New York-based Special Envoy for Angola and, to the extent possible, continue United Nations human rights and humanitarian activities in the country.
21 January 1999: Security Council, concerned at humanitarian impact of Angolan
conflict, urges generous funding of 1999 Consolidated Humanitarian Appeal
In a Statement by its President made on 21 January 1999 S/PRST/1999/3 , the Security Council
noted with alarm the serious deterioration in the political and military situation in Angola and expressed profound concern at the humanitarian impact of the conflict on the Angolan people. The Council urged the international community to support the Government of Angola in fulfilling its primary responsibility for the humanitarian needs of the Angolan people and. Thus, it urged Member States to fund generously the 1999 Consolidated Humanitarian Appeal for
24 February 1999: Pursuant to Angolan Government assessment that continued
multidisciplinary UN presence in the country no longer necessary,
Secretary-General reports to Security Council on technical liquidation of MONUA
In a report S/1999/202 submitted to the Council on 24 February 1999, the Secretary-General stated that the situation in Angola remained grave, with heavy fighting continuing to rage in several parts of the
country. Deep animosity and distrust persisted between the Government of Angola and the
União Nacional para a Independência Total de Angola (UNITA) - led by Mr. Jonas Savimbi.
On 27 January 1999, the Angolan Government informed the Special Representative of the Secretary-General that, in its view, a continued multidisciplinary presence of the United Nations in Angola was not necessary. The Government expressed the view that the United Nations should continue its activities through the specialized agencies, under the coordination of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The Angolan Government indicated to continue to deal with representatives of United Nations agencies and programmes on issues related to humanitarian assistance, human rights and other matters of interest to the people of Angola. As for MONUA, the Government considered that conditions for maintaining a MONUA presence had ceased to exist. In his letter, President dos Santos further emphasized that his Government was not opposed to the appointment of a representative of the Secretary-General who, from New York, could maintain contact with the Government of Angola in monitoring the evolution of the situation in the country. The Secretary-General stated that he would continue consultations with the Government concerning the modalities of the future presence of the United Nations and to inform the Security Council of the outcome of these consultations.
The relocation of United Nations personnel and equipment proceeded smoothly and,
generally, according to the existing plans, despite the shortages of air assets at MONUA's disposal. All United Nations team sites and regional headquarters were relocated to Luanda by 23 February. As of 24 February 1999 and since the beginning of 1999, a total of 325 MONUA military and civilian police observers have been repatriated. With regard to the formed units, the Namibian contingent was repatriated on 22 February, while the Portuguese signal unit is expected to leave Angola by the end of February 1999. The Russian helicopter unit is scheduled to depart soon after the expiration of MONUA's mandate. The technical liquidation of MONUA and its predecessors, whose combined presence in Angola spanned a period of almost 10 years, presented a significant challenge to the Organization and might take over six months to complete, demanding the presence in Angola of a substantial number of administrative, logistical and other personnel, as well as a small medical unit. Most of the
remaining military, police and civilian personnel would be repatriated by the end of March 1999.
26 February 1999: Security Council takes note of expiration of MONUA's
mandate on that day; endorses technical liquidation of the mission
On 26 February 1999, the Security Council adopted resolution 1229(1999) , whereby the Council took note that the mandate of MONUA expired on 26 February 1999. It endorsed recommendations of the Secretary-General of 24 February 1999 (S/1999/202) regarding the technical liquidation of MONUA. The Council affirmed that notwithstanding the expiration of the mandate of MONUA, the Status of Forces Agreement applicable to MONUA remained in force until the departure of the final elements of MONUA from Angola. It decided that the the human rights component of MONUA would continue its activities during the liquidation period. Deep concern was expressed at the lack of progress in investigating the downing of the two aircraft chartered by the United Nations and the loss, under suspicious circumstances, of other commercial aircraft over UNITA controlled areas. The Council called upon all concerned, especially UNITA, to cooperate with and facilitate an immediate and objective international investigation of these incidents.
7 May 1999: Security Council, alarmed at humanitarian crisis, establishes
expert panels relating to violations of measures imposed against UNITA
Adopting resolution 1237(1999) on 7 May 1999, the Security Council, expressed its alarm at the humanitarian effects of the
.crisis on the civilian population of Angola, stressed that lasting peace and national reconciliation in Angola could only be achieved through a political settlement of the conflict. The Council deplored the deteriorating situation in Angola, which was primarily due to the refusal of UNITA, under the leadership of Mr. Jonas Savimbi, to comply with its obligations under the "Acordos de Paz", the Lusaka Protocol and relevant Security Council resolutions. It condemned the continued, indiscriminate attacks by UNITA against the civilian population of Angola, particularly in the cities of Huambo, Kuito and Malange; and decided to establish expert panels for a period of six months with the mandate to:
- collect information and investigate reports, including through visits to the countries concerned, relating to the violation of the measures imposed against UNITA with respect to arms and related matériel, petroleum and petroleum products, diamonds and the movement of UNITA funds and information on military assistance, including mercenaries;
- identify parties aiding and abetting the violations of the above-mentioned measures; and
- recommend measures to end such violations and to improve the implementation of the
The resolution reiterated the Council's call upon all concerned to cooperate with the United Nations humanitarian assistance activities on the basis of the principles of neutrality and non-discrimination, to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian assistance to all those in need throughout the territory of Angola, and to guarantee unconditionally the security and freedom of movement of humanitarian personnel.
19 May 1999: Security Council demands information on and release of
passengers of Antonov-26 aircraft, shot down by UNITA on 12 May 1999
In Presidential Statement S/PRST/1999/14 by the Security Council issued on 19 May 1999, Members of the Council strongly condemned the criminal act by the União Nacional Para a Independência Total de Angola (UNITA) against commercial aircraft, namely the shooting down of an Antonov-26 aircraft on 12 May 1999 near Luzamba and the taking hostage of its Russian crew, while the fate of its Angolan passengers remained unknown. The Council expressed grave concern at the fate of those who were on board the
downed aircraft, demanded the immediate and unconditional release of the Russian crew members and all other foreign nationals that might be held hostage by UNITA in Angola, and demanded also information on the fate of the Angolan passengers. It stressed that UNITA and its leader Mr. Jonas Savimbi carried full responsibility for their security. The Security Council called upon the Government of Angola and all other concerned parties to cooperate in obtaining the release of the Russian crew members as well as in ascertaining the fate of
passengers and crew members of other commercial aircraft lost under suspicious ircumstances over UNITA-controlled territory.