31 July 2006
Security Council
SC/8794

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Security Council

5502nd Meeting (AM)


SECURITY COUNCIL RENEWS EXISTING SANCTIONS REGIME IN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO


UNTIL 31 JULY 2007, UNANIMOUSLY ADOPTING RESOLUTION 1698 (2006)


Expresses Determination to Closely Monitor Arms Embargo, Travel Ban, Assets Freeze


The Security Council, condemning the illicit flow of weapons within and into the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and determined to closely monitor compliance with the arms embargo it imposed in July 2003 and expanded in April 2005, and the travel ban and assets freeze on those in violation of it, decided to renew the existing sanctions regime in that country, set to expire today, for a further year, in light of the failure by the parties to comply with its demands.


Unanimously adopting resolution 1698 (2006) under Chapter VII of the Charter, the Council requested the Secretary-General to take the necessary administrative measures, with a view to extending the mandate of the four-person Group of Experts to help monitor illicit arms flows into the country for a period expiring on 31 July 2007, drawing, as appropriate, on the expertise of the Group’s members and appointing new members as necessary.


The Council also requested the expert group to continue fulfilling its mandate as defined in resolutions 1533, 1596 and 1649, and to report to the Council in writing by 20 December 2006, and again before 10 July 2007.


Resolutions 1533 (2004) and 1596 (2005) mandate the experts to, among other tasks, examine and analyze information gathered by the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC), countries of the region and others, on arms flows, and to recommend ways of improving the capabilities of States, particularly those in the region, to comply with the embargo.


Resolution 1649 (2005) asks the Group to help identify the political and military leaders of foreign armed groups operating in the country, who impede the disarmament and voluntary repatriation or resettlement of combatants, as well as the political and military leaders of the Congolese militias receiving support from outside the Democratic Republic of the Congo, particularly those operating in Ituri, who impede participation of their combatants in the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration processes.


The Council, by other terms of the text, requested the Group of Experts, in consultation with all relevant stakeholders, to include, in its report to be submitted by 20 December 2006, further recommendations on feasible and effective measures the Council might impose to prevent the illegal exploitation of natural resources financing armed groups and militias in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.


The Council requested the Secretary-General to enable the expert group to perform the tasks set out without prejudice to the execution of the other tasks in its mandate, by providing it with the necessary additional resources.  He was also requested to present, before 15 February 2007, in close consultation with the experts group, a report comprising an assessment of the potential economic, humanitarian and social impact on the population of the Democratic Republic of the Congo of the implementation of the possible measures referred to above.


The Council urged the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to strengthen its efforts with a view to extending State authority throughout its territory, establishing its control over the exploitation and export of natural resources and improving the transparency of export revenues from those natural resources.


Strongly condemning the continued use and recruitment of children in the hostilities in the country, the Council decided that, for a period expiring on 31 July 2007, to extend the provisions of resolution 1596 to political and military leaders recruiting or using children in armed conflict, and individuals committing serious violations of international law involving the targeting of children in situations of armed conflict, including killing and maiming, sexual violence, abduction and forced displacement.


The Council reaffirmed its demand that all parties and States cooperate fully with the work of the experts group, ensuring their safety and unhindered access to persons, documents and sites deemed relevant to the execution of its mandate.  It further demanded that all parties and States ensure cooperation with the Group of Experts of individuals and entities within their jurisdiction or under their control.


By other provisions of the text, the Council expressed its intention to consider extending application of the individual measures provided for in paragraphs 13 and 15 of resolution 1596 to individuals obstructing the action of MONUC or the Group of Experts, and requested the Secretary-General to present his observations in that regard.


The meeting began at 11:35 a.m. and adjourned at 11:40 a.m.


Resolution


The full text of resolution 1698 (2006) reads as follows:


“The Security Council,


“Recalling its previous resolutions and the statements by its President concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in particular resolutions 1493 of 28 July 2003, 1533 of 12 March 2004, 1552 of 27 July 2004, 1565 of 1 October 2004, 1592 of 30 March 2005, 1596 of 18 April 2005, 1616 of 29 July 2005, 1649 of 21 December 2005 and 1654 of 31 January 2006,


“Reaffirming its commitment to respect for the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, as well as all States in the region,


“Condemning the continuing illicit flow of weapons within and into the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and declaring its determination to continue close monitoring of the implementation of the arms embargo imposed by resolution 1493 and expanded by resolution 1596, and to enforce the measures provided for in paragraphs 13 and 15 of resolution 1596 against persons and entities acting in violation of this embargo,


“Reiterating its serious concern regarding the presence of armed groups and militias in the Eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, particularly in the provinces of Ituri, North Kivu and South Kivu, which perpetuate a climate of insecurity in the whole region,


“Recognizing the linkage between the illegal exploitation of natural resources, illicit trade in such resources and the proliferation and trafficking of arms as one of the factors fuelling and exacerbating conflicts in the Great Lakes region of Africa,


“Encouraging the authorities of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to continue their efforts with a view to promoting good governance and transparent economic management, and welcoming in this regard the work of the National Assembly’s Special Commission in charge of evaluating the validity of the economic and financial contracts concluded during the 1996-1997 and 1998 conflicts,


“Taking note of the reports of the Group of Experts referred to in paragraph 10 of resolution 1533 and paragraph 21 of resolution 1596 (hereafter the Group of Experts), dated 26 January 2006 (S/2006/53) and 18 July 2006 (S/2006/525), transmitted by the Committee established in accordance with paragraph 8 of resolution 1533 (hereafter the Committee),


“Recalling also its resolution 1612 of 26 July 2005 and its previous resolutions on children and armed conflict,


“Taking note of the report of the Secretary General on children and armed conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, dated 13 June 2006 (S/2006/389), and of its recommendations,


“Taking note of the report of the Security Council mission which visited Kinshasa from 10 to 12 June 2006 (S/2006/434), and endorsing its recommendations,


“Noting that the situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security in the region,


“Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,


“1.   Reaffirms the demands of paragraphs 15, 18 and 19 of resolution 1493, of paragraph 5 of resolution 1596, and of paragraphs 15 and 16 of resolution 1649;


“2.   Decides, in light of the failure by the parties to comply with the demands of the Council, to renew until 31 July 2007 the provisions of paragraphs 20 to 22 of resolution 1493, as amended and expanded by paragraph 1 of resolution 1596 and by paragraph 2 of resolution 1649, and reaffirms paragraphs 2, 6, 10 and 13 to 16 of resolution 1596, as well as paragraphs 3 to 5 of resolution 1649 and paragraph 10 of resolution 1671;


“3.   Requests the Secretary-General to take the necessary administrative measures as expeditiously as possible with a view to extending the mandate of the Group of Experts for a period expiring on 31 July 2007, drawing, as appropriate, on the expertise of the members of the Group of Experts established pursuant to resolution 1654 and appointing new members as necessary in consultation with the Committee;


“4.   Requests the Group of Experts to continue fulfilling its mandate as defined in resolutions 1533, 1596 and 1649, to update regularly the Committee on its work, and to report to the Council in writing, through the Committee, by 20 December 2006, and again before 10 July 2007;


“5.   Recalls that, by its resolutions 1533, 1596, 1616 and 1649, the Council has mandated the Group of Experts:


(a)   To examine and analyse information gathered by the United Nations Organisation Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC) in the context of its monitoring mandate,


(b)   To gather and analyse all relevant information in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, countries of the region and, as necessary, in other countries, in cooperation with the governments of those countries, flows of arms and related materiel, as well as networks operating in violation of the measures imposed by paragraph 20 of resolution 1493,


(c)   To consider and recommend, where appropriate, ways of improving the capabilities of States interested, in particular those of the region, to ensure the measures imposed by paragraph 20 of resolution 1493 are effectively implemented,


(d)   To report to the Council in writing, through the Committee, on the implementation of the measures imposed by paragraph 20 of resolution 1493 and on the implementation of the measures set forth in paragraphs 1, 6, 10, 13 and 15 of resolution 1596, with recommendations in this regard, including information on the sources of financing, such as from natural resources, which are funding the illicit trade of arms,


(e)   To keep the Committee frequently updated on its activities,


(f)   To exchange with MONUC, as appropriate, information that might be of use in the fulfilment of its monitoring mandate as described in paragraphs 3 and 4 of resolution 1533,


(g)   To provide the Committee in its reports with a list, with supporting evidence, of those found to have violated the measures imposed by paragraph 20 of resolution 1493, and those found to have supported them in such activities for possible future measures by the Council,


(h)   Within its capabilities and without prejudice to the execution of the other tasks in its mandate, to assist the Committee in the designation of the leaders referred to in paragraph 2 of resolution 1649;


“6.   Requests the Group of Experts, in close consultation with all relevant stakeholders, including the Governments of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and of the neighbouring States, the World Bank, MONUC and private sector actors:


- to include in its report to be submitted by 20 December 2006, further recommendations based on paragraphs 158 and 159 of its report dated 18 July 2006, on feasible and effective measures the Council might impose to prevent the illegal exploitation of natural resources financing armed groups and militias in the Eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including through a certificate of origin regime,


- to include in the above-mentioned report an assessment of the relative importance of the exploitation of natural resources to the armed groups as compared to other sources of income;


“7.   Requests the Secretary-General to enable the Group of Experts to perform the tasks set out in the previous paragraph without prejudice to the execution of the other tasks in its mandate, by providing it with the necessary additional resources;


“8.   Requests the Secretary-General to present before 15 February 2007, in close consultation with the Group of Experts, a report comprising an assessment of the potential economic, humanitarian and social impact on the population of the Democratic Republic of the Congo of implementation of the possible measures referred to in paragraph 6 above;


“9.   Expresses its intention to consider, after it reviews the reports referred to in paragraphs 6 and 8 above, possible measures to stem the sources of financing of armed groups and militias, including the illegal exploitation of categories of natural resources, in the Eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo;


“10.  Urges the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to strengthen its efforts, with the support of the international community, including specialised international organisations, with a view to effectively extending State authority throughout its territory, to establishing its control over the exploitation and export of natural resources, and to improving the transparency of export revenue from those natural resources;


“11.  Welcomes the recommendations of the Group of Experts aimed at improving the tracking of ore and precious metals within a regional framework, and encourages States in the region of the Great Lakes of Africa to agree on ways to act upon those recommendations;


“12.  Recalls the terms of paragraph 13 of resolution 1493, and once again strongly condemns the continued use and recruitment of children in the hostilities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo;


“13.  Decides that, for a period expiring on 31 July 2007, the provisions of paragraphs 13 to 16 of resolution 1596 shall extend to the following individuals, operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and designated by the Committee,


– Political and military leaders recruiting or using children in armed conflict in violation of applicable international law,


– Individuals committing serious violations of international law involving the targeting of children in situations of armed conflict, including killing and maiming, sexual violence, abduction and forced displacement;


“14.  Decides that the tasks of the Committee set out in paragraph 18 of resolution 1596 shall extend to the provisions set out in the previous paragraph;


“15.  Expresses its intention to modify or to remove the provisions above if it determines that the demands reaffirmed in paragraph 1 have been satisfied;


“16.  Recalls that, by its resolution 1565, the Council has mandated MONUC:


– to monitor the implementation of the measures imposed by paragraph 20 of resolution 1493, including on the lakes, in cooperation with the United Nations Operation in Burundi (ONUB) and, as appropriate, with the Governments concerned and with the Group of Experts, including by inspecting, as it deems it necessary and without notice, the cargo of aircraft and of any transport vehicle using the ports, airports, airfields, military bases and border crossings in North Kivu, in South Kivu and in Ituri,


– to seize or collect, as appropriate, the arms and any related materiel whose presence in the territory of the Democratic Republic of the Congo violates the measures imposed by paragraph 20 of resolution 1493, and dispose of such arms and related materiel as appropriate;


“17.  Requests the working group of the Security Council on children in armed conflict, the Secretary-General and his Special Representative for children in armed conflict, as well as the Group of Experts, within its capabilities and without prejudice to the execution of the other tasks in its mandate, to assist the Committee in the designation of the individuals referred to in paragraph 13 above, by making known without delay to the Committee any useful information;


“18.  Reaffirms its demand, expressed in paragraph 19 of resolution 1596, that all parties and all States cooperate fully with the work of the Group of Experts, and that they ensure:


– the safety of its members,


– unhindered and immediate access, in particular to persons, documents and sites the Group of Experts deems relevant to the execution of its mandate;


“19.  Further demands that all parties and all States ensure the cooperation with the Group of Experts of individuals and entities within their jurisdiction or under their control, and calls on all States in the region to implement fully their obligations under paragraph 18 above;


“20.  Acknowledges the assurances given by the Government of Uganda to the Committee on 23 May 2006 in relation to its commitment to fulfil its obligations under paragraph 19 of resolution 1596, and calls on the Government of Uganda to demonstrate this commitment fully;


“21.  Expresses its intention to consider extending application of the individual measures provided for in paragraphs 13 and 15 of resolution 1596 to individuals obstructing the action of MONUC or of the Group of Experts, and requests the Secretary General to present to the Council his observations in this regard;


“22.  Recalls that, in accordance with paragraphs 2(c) and 4 of resolution 1596, States have an obligation to notify in advance to the Committee supplies to the Democratic Republic of the Congo of non-lethal military equipment intended solely for humanitarian or protective use, and related technical assistance and training, as well as authorised shipments of arms and related materiel to the Democratic Republic of the Congo consistent with such exemptions noted in paragraph 2(a) of resolution 1596;


“23.  Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.”


Background


The Security Council this morning had before it a letter dated 18 July from the Chairman of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1533 (2004), transmitting the report of the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo (document S/2006/525).


The report recalls that the Council, in its resolution 1493 (2003), imposed an arms embargo on the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, particularly on the district of Ituri and the two Kivu provinces, which was then expanded to include financial sanctions and travel bans.  The Group of Experts set up to monitor the bans was last re-established by the Secretary-General following a request by the Council in its resolution 1654 (2006), for a period expiring on 31 July 2006.  In a letter dated 7 March, the Secretary-General informed the Council that the Group would be Chaired by Ibra Deguene Ka (Senegal) and composed of the following experts:  Jacques A. J. Buisson (Canada, arms trafficking expert); Enrico Carisch (Switzerland, finance expert); Abdoulaye Cissoko (Mali, aviation expert); and Jean-Luc Gallet (France, customs and border control expert).


In its report, the Group reviews several aspects of its work, including the illegal movements of firearms, including border contraband; Force democratiques de liberation du Rwanda; civil aviation, including identification of suspicious flights and air transport of arms and ammunition; response by States to the measures contained in the relevant Security Council resolutions; the financing of arms embargo violations, including diversions of natural resources for funding embargo violations and compromised integrity of the exports of natural resources by the Democratic Republic of the Congo; customs and migratory flows, including efforts by the Congolese authorities to regain control; cooperation between United Nations Member States and the expert group; compliance with financial sanctions and travel bans; and collaboration between the experts and the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC).


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