|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
5977th Meeting (PM)
SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS INTERNATIONAL SECURITY ASSISTANCE FORCE IN AFGHANISTAN
FOR ONE YEAR, SEEKS REINFORCEMENTS TO BOOST SECURITY
Recognizing the need to curb the Taliban resurgence and the narcotics trade while minimizing civilian casualties in Afghanistan, the Security Council today decided to extend the authorization of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in that country for 12 months.
According to resolution 1833 (2008), passed unanimously under the binding Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter, the extension would apply for one year beyond 13 October 2008, when the present authorization was set to expire. In the resolution, the 15-member body also called on Member States to contribute personnel, equipment and other resources to ISAF and to the related Trust Fund.
In addition, the Council encouraged ISAF and other partners to accelerate progress in strengthening the Afghan national security sector so that it could ensure the rule of law throughout the country.
Following the resolutions passage, the representative of Libya expressed his hope that the decision would assist the people and Government of Afghanistan in their quest for security, but also voiced his concern over the magnitude of civilian casualties in Afghanistan and reasserted that the struggle to defeat terrorism did not excuse such deaths. He urged the international force to protect civilians and their rights, and asked that those who harmed civilians be brought to justice. He also stressed that terrorism would not be defeated by force alone.
The meeting opened at 1 p.m. and closed at 1:05 p.m.
The full text of resolution 1833 (2008) reads as follows:
The Security Council,
Reaffirming its previous resolutions on Afghanistan, in particular its resolutions 1386 (2001), 1510 (2003), 1776 (2007) and 1806 (2008),
Reaffirming also its resolutions 1267 (1999), 1368 (2001), 1373 (2001) and 1822 (2008), and reiterating its support for international efforts to root out terrorism in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations,
Recalling its resolutions 1265 (1999), 1296 (2000), 1674 (2006) and 1738 (2006) on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, its resolutions 1325 (2000) and 1820 (2008) on women and peace and security, and its resolution 1612 (2005) on children and armed conflict,
Reaffirming its strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Afghanistan,
Recognizing that the responsibility for providing security and law and order throughout the country resides with the Afghan Authorities, stressing the role of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in assisting the Afghan Government to improve the security situation and welcoming the cooperation of the Afghan Government with ISAF,
Recognizing once again the interconnected nature of the challenges in Afghanistan, reaffirming that sustainable progress on security, governance and development, as well as the cross-cutting issue of counter-narcotics is mutually reinforcing and welcoming the continuing efforts of the Afghan Government and the international community to address these challenges through a comprehensive approach,
Stressing the central and impartial role that the United Nations continues to play in promoting peace and stability in Afghanistan by leading the efforts of the international community, noting, in this context, the synergies in the objectives of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and of ISAF, and stressing the need for strengthened cooperation, coordination and mutual support, taking due account of their respective designated responsibilities,
Expressing its strong concern about the security situation in Afghanistan, in particular the increased violent and terrorist activities by the Taliban, Al-Qaida, illegally armed groups, criminals and those involved in the narcotics trade, and the increasingly strong links between terrorism activities and illicit drugs, resulting in threats to the local population, including children, national security forces and international military and civilian personnel,
Encouraging ISAF to further, effectively support, within its designated responsibilities, Afghan-led sustained efforts to address, in cooperation with relevant international and regional actors, the threat posed by the illicit production of and trafficking in drugs,
Expressing also its concern over the harmful consequences of violent and terrorist activities by the Taliban, Al-Qaida and other extremist groups on the capacity of the Afghan Government to guarantee the rule of law, to provide security and basic services to the Afghan people, and to ensure the full enjoyment of their human rights and fundamental freedoms,
Reiterating its support for the continuing endeavours by the Afghan Government, with the assistance of the international community, including ISAF and the Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) coalition, to improve the security situation and to continue to address the threat posed by the Taliban, Al-Qaida and other extremist groups, and stressing in this context the need for sustained international efforts, including those of ISAF and the OEF coalition,
Condemning in the strongest terms all attacks, including Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attacks, suicide attacks and abductions, targeting civilians and Afghan and international forces and their deleterious effect on the stabilization, reconstruction and development efforts in Afghanistan, and condemning further the use by the Taliban and other extremist group of civilians as human shields,
Recognizing the increased threats posed by the Taliban, Al-Qaida and other extremist groups as well as the challenges related to the efforts to address such threats, expressing its serious concern with the high number of civilian casualties in this context, noting relevant statements of Afghan authorities and high-ranking UN officials, as well as Press Statements of the President of the Security Council, in this regard, and calling for compliance with international humanitarian and human rights law and for all appropriate measures to be taken to ensure the protection of civilians,
Recognizing the efforts taken by ISAF and other international forces to minimize the risk of civilian casualties, and calling on them to take additional robust efforts in this regard, notably by the continuous review of tactics and procedures and the conduct of after-action reviews and investigations in cooperation with the Afghan Government in cases where civilian casualties have occurred and when the Afghan Government finds these joint investigations appropriate,
Stressing the need for further progress in security sector reform, including further strengthening of the Afghan National Army and in particular of the Afghan National Police, disbandment of illegal armed groups, justice sector reform and counter narcotics,
Stressing in this context the importance of further progress in the reconstruction and reform of the prison sector in Afghanistan, in order to improve the respect for the rule of law and human rights therein,
Reiterating its call on all Afghan parties and groups to engage constructively in peaceful political dialogue within the framework of the Afghan Constitution and in the socio-economic development of the country and to avoid resorting to violence including through the use of illegal armed groups, and encouraging the implementation of Afghan-led reconciliation programmes within the framework of the Afghan Constitution and with full respect of the implementation of measures introduced by the Security Council in its resolution 1267 (1999) and other relevant resolutions of the Council,
Recalling the leading role that the Afghan Authorities will play for the organization of the next presidential elections, with the assistance of the United Nations, and stressing the importance of the assistance to be provided to the Afghan Authorities by ISAF in ensuring a secure environment conducive to the elections,
Recognizing the importance of the contribution of neighbouring and regional partners for the stabilization of Afghanistan, and stressing the crucial importance of advancing regional cooperation as an effective means to promote security, governance and development in Afghanistan,
Welcoming the continued coordination between ISAF and the OEF coalition, and the cooperation established between ISAF and the European Union presence in Afghanistan, in particular its police mission (EUPOL Afghanistan),
Expressing its appreciation for the leadership provided by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and for the contributions of many nations to ISAF and to the OEF coalition, including its maritime interdiction component, which operates within the framework of the counter-terrorism operations in Afghanistan and in accordance with the applicable rules of international law,
Determining that the situation in Afghanistan still constitutes a threat to international peace and security,
Determined to ensure the full implementation of the mandate of ISAF, in coordination with the Afghan Government,
Acting for these reasons under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,
1. Decides to extend the authorization of the International Security Assistance Force, as defined in resolution 1386 (2001) and 1510 (2003), for a period of twelve months beyond 13 October 2008;
2. Authorizes the Member States participating in ISAF to take all necessary measures to fulfil its mandate;
3. Recognizes the need to further strengthen ISAF to meet all its operational requirements, and in this regard calls upon Member States to contribute personnel, equipment and other resources to ISAF, and to make contributions to the Trust Fund established pursuant to resolution 1386 (2001);
4. Stresses the importance of increasing, in a comprehensive framework, the functionality, professionalism and accountability of the Afghan security sector, encourages ISAF and other partners to sustain their efforts, as resources permit, to train, mentor and empower the Afghan national security forces, in order to accelerate progress towards the goal of self-sufficient and ethnically balanced Afghan security forces providing security and ensuring the rule of law throughout the country, welcomes in this context the progress achieved by the Afghan Authorities in assuming lead security responsibility for Kabul, and stresses the importance of supporting the planned expansion of the Afghan National Army;
5. Calls upon ISAF to continue to work in close consultation with the Afghan Government and the Special Representative of the Secretary General as well as with the OEF coalition in the implementation of the force mandate;
6. Requests the leadership of ISAF to keep the Security Council regularly informed, through the Secretary-General, on the implementation of its mandate, including through the provision of quarterly reports;
7. Decides to remain actively seized of this matter.
* *** *For information media • not an official record