In a statement read out on behalf of the Council by its President, Legwaila Joseph Legwaila (Botswana), the Council decided not only to hold regular meetings with representatives of troop-contributing countries and the Secretariat, but also to convene ad hoc meetings with them in the event of unforeseen developments in a particular peace-keeping operation which could require Council action.
Regular meetings should be held "as soon as practicable and in good time before the Council takes decisions on the extension or termination of, or significant changes in, the mandate of a particular peace-keeping operation", according to the statement. Further, if possible, the Council will hold meetings with prospective troop-contributors when it considers establishing a new peace-keeping operation. The President of the Council, who will chair all meetings with troop contributors, will report their views to the Council during its informal consultations.
The meetings envisaged in today's statement would be in addition to those convened by the Secretariat for troop contributors to meet with special representatives of the Secretary-General or force commanders, or to discuss operational matters. The arrangements described in the statement are not exhaustive and do not preclude other consultations, according to the text. The Council would consider further measures in the light of experience.
The text of the statement, which will be issued as document S/PRST/1996/13, reads as follows:
Test of Presidential Statement
"The Security Council has reviewed the arrangements for consultation and exchange of information with troop contributing countries, which were established by the statement of its President made on behalf of the Council on 4 November 1994 (S/PRST/1994/62). The Council has given careful consideration
to the views expressed on this question in its debate under the item "An Agenda for Peace: Peace-keeping" in its 3611th meeting on 20 December 1995, as well as to the views expressed in debates in the General Assembly.
"The Security Council has noted the wish expressed in these debates that arrangements for consultation and exchange of information with troop- contributing countries should be improved. The Council shares this wish. It considers it essential for troop-contributing countries to be heard. It notes that many of the concerns expressed would be met if the arrangements set out in the statement of its President of 4 November 1994 were fully implemented. It is also of the view that those arrangements can be strengthened further as set forth below.
"The Security Council will therefore follow in future the procedures here set out:
"(a) Meetings will be held as a matter of course between members of the Council, troop-contributing countries and the Secretariat for the purpose of consultations and the exchange of information and views; the meetings will be chaired by the Presidency of the Council supported by a representative of the Secretariat;
"(b) The meetings will be held as soon as practicable and in good time before the Council takes decisions on the extension or termination of, or significant changes in, the mandate of a particular peace-keeping operation.
"(c) When the Council considers establishing a new peace-keeping operation, meetings will, unless it proves to be impracticable, be held with any prospective troop-contributors who have already been approached by the Secretariat and who have indicated that they may be willing to contribute to the operation;
"(d) The president of the Council will, in the course of informal consultations of members of the Council, report the views expressed by participants at each meeting with troop-contributing or prospective troop- contributing countries;
"(e) The existing practice of inviting to these meetings Members States which make special contributions to peace-keeping operations other than troops -- that is, contributions to trust funds, logistics and equipment -- will continue;
"(f) The monthly tentative forecast of work of the Council made available to Member States will include an indication of the expected schedule of such meetings for the month;
Security Council - 3 - Press Release SC/6198 3645th Meeting (PM) 28 March 1996
"(g) Ad hoc meetings may be convened in the event of unforeseen developments in a particular peace-keeping operation which could require action by the Council;
"(h) These meeting will be in addition to those convened and chaired by the Secretariat for troop-contributors to meet with Special Representatives of the Secretary-General or Force Commanders, or to discuss operational matters concerning particular peace-keeping operations, to which members of the Security Council will also be invited;
"(i) Background information and an agenda will be circulated by the Secretariat to the participants well in advance of each of the various meetings referred to above; members of the Council may also circulate information as appropriate.
"(j) Interpretation services in all the official languages of the Organization will continue to be available; translation of written documents will continue to be available, if possible in advance of the meetings;
"(k) The time and venue of each meeting should, were possible, appear in advance in the Journal of the United Nations;
"(l) The Council will append to its annual report of the General Assembly information about these meetings.
"The Security Council recalls that the arrangements described above are not exhaustive. They do not preclude consultations in a variety of forms, including informal communications between the Council President or its members and troop-contributing countries and, as appropriate, with other countries especially affected, for example, countries from the region concerned.
"The Security Council will continue to keep arrangements for consultations and the exchange of information and views with troop contributors and prospective contributors under review and stands ready to consider further measures and new mechanisms to enhance further the arrangements in the light of experience."
The meeting, which was called to order at 12:54 p.m., adjourned at 1:02 p.m.
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