|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
6065th Meeting (AM)
SECURITY COUNCIL URGES DJIBOUTI, ERITREA TO RESOLVE BORDER DISPUTE PEACEFULLY
UNANIMOUSLY ADOPTING RESOLUTION 1862 (2009)
Welcomes Djibouti’s Withdrawal to Status Quo Ante; Demands Eritrea
Conduct Similar Withdrawal, Acknowledge Border Dispute within Five Weeks
Expressing its deep concern about the continuing tense border dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea and its possible impact on subregional stability and security, the Security Council today urged Djibouti and Eritrea to resolve their border dispute peacefully and demanded that Eritrea withdraw its forces within five weeks to the positions before fighting broke out between the two countries on 10 June 2008.
Unanimously adopting resolution 1862 (2009), the Council demanded that Eritrea also ensure that no military presence or activity was being pursued in Ras Doumeira and Doumeira Island where the conflict took place; that it acknowledge its border dispute with Djibouti; engage actively in dialogue to defuse the tension and in diplomatic efforts leading to a mutually acceptable settlement of the border issue; and cooperate fully with the Secretary-General’s good offices.
The Council welcomed the fact that Djibouti had withdrawn its forces to the status quo ante, as called for in presidential statement S/PRST/2008/20 of 12 June 2008 (see Press Release SC/9353), and condemned Eritrea’s refusal to do so.
The Council further welcomed the offer of good offices by the Secretary-General, but deeply regretted that Eritrea had refused to grant visas to members of a United Nations fact-finding mission in September.
The Secretary-General was requested to submit a report on the situation to the Council within six weeks, after which the Council would review the situation and take a further decision.
The meeting started at 10:20 a.m. and adjourned at 10:25 a.m.
The full text of resolution 1862 (2009) reads as follows:
“The Security Council,
“Affirming its strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and unity of both Djibouti and Eritrea, and recalling the importance of the principles of good-neighbourliness, non-interference and regional cooperation,
“Recalling that in the statement of its President dated 12 June 2008 (S/PRST/2008/20) it condemned Eritrea’s military action against Djibouti in Ras Doumeira and Doumeira Island and called upon the two parties to show maximum restraint and withdraw forces to the status quo ante,
“Taking note of the letter of the Secretary-General dated 11 September 2008 (S/2008/602) in which he transmitted the report of the fact-finding mission he sent following its 5924th meeting (S/PV.5924),
“Expressing its deep concern that, as mentioned in the report of the fact-finding mission referred to above, Eritrea has not withdrawn its forces to the status quo ante, as called for by the Security Council in the statement of its President dated 12 June 2008 (S/PRST/2008/20),
“Reiterating its serious concern at the absence of dialogue between the two parties, and at the refusal of Eritrea so far to engage in dialogue, or to accept bilateral contacts, mediation or facilitation efforts by subregional or regional organizations or to respond positively to the efforts of the Secretary-General,
“Noting that Djibouti has withdrawn its forces to the status quo ante and has cooperated fully with the fact-finding mission mentioned above, as well as with other missions sent by subregional and regional organizations,
“Taking note of the first visit to Asmara, since the conflict of June 2008, of the Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union in October 2008,
“Expressing its deep concern about the continuing tense border dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea and over the possible impact of the grave and unstable security situation in the area of Doumeira on subregional stability and security after the serious incidents of 10 June 2008, which led to dozens of deaths and wounded,
“1. Urges Djibouti and Eritrea to resolve their border dispute peacefully, as a matter of priority and in a manner consistent with international law, and emphasizes that it is the primary responsibility of the parties to set up the appropriate diplomatic and legal framework to this end;
“2. Reiterates its appreciation for the efforts by the Secretary-General, the African Union and the Arab League to engage both parties, encourages them to strengthen their efforts in this regard and encourages also regional and subregional organizations as well as Members States that are in a position to provide their assistance to this end to do so;
“3. Welcomes the offer of good offices made by the Secretary-General, deeply regrets that Eritrea has continuously refused to grant visas to the members of the fact-finding mission mentioned above, or to receive any envoy by the Secretary-General, and welcomes the continued readiness of the Secretary-General to send a fact-finding mission or an envoy to Eritrea;
“4. Welcomes the fact that Djibouti has withdrawn its forces to the status quo ante, as called for by the Security Council in the statement of its President dated 12 June 2008 (S/PRST/2008/20) and established by the fact-finding mission, and condemns the refusal of Eritrea to do so;
“5. Demands that Eritrea:
“(i) Withdraw its forces and all their equipment to the positions of the status quo ante, and ensure that no military presence or activity is being pursued in the area where the conflict occurred in Ras Doumeira and Doumeira Island in June 2008, and
“(ii)Acknowledge its border dispute with Djibouti in Ras Doumeira and Doumeira Island, engage actively in dialogue to defuse the tension and engage also in diplomatic efforts leading to a mutually acceptable settlement of the border issue, and
“(iii) Abide by its international obligations as a Member of the United Nations, respect the principles mentioned in article 2, paragraphs 3, 4, and 5, and article 33 of the Charter, and cooperate fully with the Secretary-General, in particular through his proposal of good offices mentioned in paragraph 3;
“6. Demands that Eritrea comply immediately with paragraph 5 above and, in any case, no later than five weeks after the adoption of this resolution;
“7. Requests the Secretary-General to provide to it a report on the evolution of the situation, and on the compliance by both parties with their obligations, and on his contacts with both parties and, as appropriate, with the African Union and other relevant regional organizations no later than six weeks after the adoption of this resolution;
“8. Decides to review the situation six weeks from the adoption of this resolution, on the basis of the report mentioned in paragraph 7, with a view to taking, as appropriate, a further decision;
“9. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.”
* *** *For information media • not an official record