27 November 2000


Press Release
SC/6960



SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS UNDOF MANDATE FOR FURTHER SIX MONTHS; ADOPTS RESOLUTION 1328 (2000) UNANIMOUSLY

20001127

The Security Council this evening decided to renew the mandate of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) for another period of six months until 31 May 2001.

As it unanimously adopted resolution 1328 (2000), the Council requested the Secretary-General to submit, at the end of that period, a report on the development in the situation and the measures taken to implement its resolution 338 of 22 October 1973.

[Resolution 338 (1973) calls for, among other provisions, a just and durable peace settlement.]

The Council, which met at 6:05 p.m., adjourned at 6:10 p.m.

Text of Resolution

The full text of resolution 1328 (2000) reads, as follows:

“The Security Council

“Having considered the report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force of 17 November 2000 (S/2000/1103), and also reaffirming its resolution 1308 (2000) of 17 July 2000,

“(1) Calls upon the parties concerned to implement immediately its resolution 338 (1973) of 22 October 1973;

“(2) Decides to renew the mandate of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force for another period of six months, that is, until 31 May 2001;

“(3) Requests the Secretary-General to submit, at the end of this period, a report on the development in the situation and the measures taken to implement resolution 338 (1973).”


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* The 4233rd Meeting was closed.

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Security Council - 2 - Press Release SC/6960 4234th Meeting (Night) 27 November 2000

Report of Secretary-General

The Council met this evening following its consideration of the report of the Secretary-General on UNDOF (document S/2000/1103). The Force was established in May 1974 to supervise the ceasefire called for by the Security Council and the agreement on disengagement between Syrian and Israeli forces of 31 May 1974.

During the period under review, from 23 May to 21 November 2000, the ceasefire in the Israel-Syria sector was maintained and the area of operations of UNDOF remained calm. The Force supervised the area of separation by means of fixed positions and patrols to ensure that military forces of either party were excluded from it and also carried out fortnightly inspections of equipment and force levels in the areas of limitation. Liaison officers from the party concerned accompanied the inspection teams. Both sides denied inspection teams access to some of their positions and imposed some restrictions on the Force’s freedom of movement.

According to the report, the Force continued to assist the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and, within the means available, medical treatment was provided to the local population on request. In UNDOF’s area of operation, especially in the area of separation, minefields continued to pose a threat to UNDOF personnel and local inhabitants. In consultation with the Syrian authorities, UNDOF instituted a minefield security and maintenance programme in the area of separation to identify and mark all minefields.

The report states that, by its resolution 54/266 of 15 June 2000, the General Assembly appropriated the amount of $37 million gross, equivalent to a monthly rate of $3.1 million gross, for the maintenance of the Force for the period from 1 July 2000 to 30 June 2001. Therefore, the cost of maintaining the Force during the extension period would be limited to the monthly rate approved by the General Assembly. As at 31 October 2000, unpaid assessments to the Special Account for UNDOF for the period since the inception of the Force until 30 November 2000 amounted to $21.9 million.

The Secretary-General says that despite the present quiet in the Israel-Syria sector, the situation in the Middle East continues to be potentially dangerous and is likely to remain so unless and until a comprehensive settlement covering all aspects of the Middle East problem can be reached. He hopes that determined efforts will be made by all concerned to tackle the problem in all its aspects, with a view to arriving at a just and durable peace settlement, as called for by the Security Council in its resolution 338 (1973).

Under the prevailing circumstances, he says, the continued presence of UNDOF in the area is essential. He recommends that the Security Council extend the mandate of the Force for a further period of six months, until 31 May 2001. At the same time, he draws attention to the shortfall in the funding of the Force. At present, unpaid assessments amount to some $21.9 million. This sum represents money owed to the Member States that contribute the troops who make up the Force. The Secretary-General appeals to Member States to pay their assessments promptly and in full and to clear all remaining arrears.

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