SECURITY COUNCIL DENOUNCES VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND HUMANITARIAN LAW IN AFGHANISTAN, CALLS ON PARTIES TO CEASE HOSTILITIES

22 October 1996
SC/6282

SECURITY COUNCIL DENOUNCES VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND HUMANITARIAN LAW IN AFGHANISTAN, CALLS ON PARTIES TO CEASE HOSTILITIES

22 October 1996

Press ReleaseSC/6282

SECURITY COUNCIL DENOUNCES VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND HUMANITARIAN LAW IN AFGHANISTAN, CALLS ON PARTIES TO CEASE HOSTILITIES

19961022 Resolution 1076 (1996), Adopted Unanimously, Calls on States Not to Interfere in Afghanistan's Internal Affairs

The Security Council this morning denounced the discrimination against girls and women and other violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in Afghanistan, noting with deep concern possible repercussions it could have on international relief and reconstruction programmes in Afghanistan.

It took that action by the unanimous adoption of resolution 1076 (1996). Also by the text, the Council demanded that all parties fulfil their obligations towards the safety of United Nations and other international personnel as well as their premises in Afghanistan, not hamper the flow of humanitarian assistance and cooperate fully with international humanitarian organizations in efforts to respond to the humanitarian needs of the Afghan people.

Taking note of proposals for an immediate cease-fire, exchange of prisoners and the demilitarization of Kabul, the Council called on all Afghan parties immediately to cease all armed hostilities, to renounce the use of force, to engage in a political dialogue to achieve national reconciliation, a political settlement and a broad-based transitional government of national unity.

Also by the resolution, the Council called on all States to refrain from outside interference in the internal affairs of Afghanistan, including the involvement of foreign military personnel and the supply of arms and ammunition to parties to the conflict in Afghanistan, and to use their influence to encourage cooperation by the Afghan parties with the United Nations Special Mission to Afghanistan.

In addition, the Council called upon the leaders of the Afghan parties to halt such activities as terrorism and drug trafficking, to desist from the use of land-mines and to cooperate with the United Nations Special Mission to Afghanistan.

The Council requested the Secretary-General, in cooperation with interested States and international organizations, in particular the Organization of the Islamic Conference, to continue his efforts to promote the political process. It also requested that he keep the Council regularly informed on the political and military situation and make recommendations on achieving a political settlement.

The Council further requested the Secretary-General to submit a report on the implementation of the resolution by 30 November.

The meeting, which began at 11:34 a.m., was adjourned at 11:48 a.m.

Resolution Adopted

The text of the resolution adopted by the Council reads as follows:

"The Security Council,

"Having considered the situation in Afghanistan,

"Recalling the previous statements of the President of the Security Council on the situation in Afghanistan, including the statements of 15 February 1996 (S/PRST/1996/6) and of 28 September 1996 (S/PRST/1996/40), and the letter dated 22 August 1996 from the President of the Security Council addressed to the Secretary-General (S/1996/683),

"Recalling also resolution 50/88 of the General Assembly,

"Noting the joint declaration made on 4 October 1996 by the leaders of Kazakstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Russian Federation, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan concerning developments in Afghanistan (S/1996/838),

"Expressing concern over the continuation and recent intensification of the military confrontation in Afghanistan which have caused civilian casualties and an increase in refugees and displaced persons, and which seriously endanger the stability and peaceful development of the region,

"Deeply concerned about the discrimination against women and other abuses of human rights in Afghanistan,

"Stressing the need to prevent further civilian casualties, and noting in this context the proposals, inter alia, for an immediate cease-fire, exchange of prisoners of war and the demilitarization of Kabul,

"Urging all Afghan parties to resolve their differences through peaceful means and achieve national reconciliation through political dialogue,

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"Stressing the importance of non-interference in the internal affairs of Afghanistan and the prevention of the flow of arms and ammunition to all parties to the conflict in Afghanistan,

"Reaffirming its strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and national unity of Afghanistan,

"Convinced that the United Nations, as a universally recognized and impartial intermediary, must continue to play the central role in international efforts towards a peaceful resolution of the Afghan conflict,

"Welcoming the willingness expressed by Member States during the Security Council meeting of 16 October 1996 to support the dialogue among all the parties and to facilitate the negotiations aimed at political settlement of the conflict,

"1. Calls upon all Afghan parties immediately to cease all armed hostilities, to renounce the use of force, to put aside their differences and to engage in a political dialogue aimed at achieving national reconciliation and a lasting political settlement of the conflict and establishing a fully representative and broad-based transitional government of national unity;

"2. Stresses that the main responsibility for finding a political solution to the conflict lies with the Afghan parties;

"3. Calls upon all States to refrain from any outside interference in the internal affairs of Afghanistan, including the involvement of foreign military personnel, to respect the right of the Afghan people to determine their own destiny and to respect the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Afghanistan;

"4. Calls upon all States immediately to end the supply of arms and ammunition to all parties to the conflict in Afghanistan;

"5. Reiterates that the continuation of the conflict in Afghanistan provides a fertile ground for terrorism and drug trafficking which destabilize the region and beyond, and calls upon the leaders of the Afghan parties to halt such activities;

"6. Expresses its regret at the civilian casualties inflicted by land- mines and calls upon all parties in Afghanistan to desist from the indiscriminate use of land-mines;

"7. Requests the Secretary-General, in cooperation, as he deems it necessary, with interested Stated and international organizations, in

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particular the Organization of the Islamic Conference, to continue his efforts to promote the political process;

"8. Reaffirms its full support for the efforts of the United Nations, in particular the activities of the United Nations Special Mission to Afghanistan in facilitating the political process towards the goals of national reconciliation and a lasting political settlement with the participation of all parties to the conflict and all segments of Afghan society;

"9. Calls upon all Afghan parties to cooperate with the United Nations Special Mission to Afghanistan, and encourages all interested States and international organizations to take all steps necessary to promote peace in Afghanistan, to support the United Nations efforts to this end and to use any influence they have to encourage the parties to cooperate fully with the United Nations Special Mission to Afghanistan;

"10. Demands that all parties fulfil their obligations and commitments regarding the safety of United Nations personnel and other international personnel as well as their premises in Afghanistan, not hamper the flow of humanitarian assistance and cooperate fully with the United Nations and associated bodies as well as with other humanitarian organizations and agencies, in their efforts to respond to the humanitarian needs of the people of Afghanistan;

"11. Denounces the discrimination against girls and women and other violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in Afghanistan, and notes with deep concern possible repercussions on international relief and reconstruction programmes in Afghanistan;

"12. Calls upon all States and international organizations to extend all possible humanitarian assistance to the civilian population of Afghanistan;

"13. Requests the Secretary-General to continue to keep the Security Council regularly informed on the basis of information received from the United Nations Special Mission to Afghanistan on the political, military and humanitarian situation, and to make recommendations on achieving a political settlement;

"14. Requests the Secretary-General to submit a report on the implementation of this resolution by 30 November 1996;

"15. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter."

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Documents before Council

As it met this morning to consider the situation in Afghanistan, the Council had before it identical letters dated 18 October from the Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan addressed to the Secretary-General and to the President of the Council (document S/1996/863), in which he submits a list of "armed Pakistani militia and military personnel". The men were captured by his Government during the fighting which culminated in "the military occupation of Kabul by Pakistani mercenaries, known as Taliban". According to the Vice-Minister, the 28 captured individuals named were fighting alongside the Taliban.

The Vice-Minister expresses the hope that the Council will dispatch a United Nations fact-finding mission to Afghanistan to interview the captured men and "evaluate other evidence of intervention".

In addition, the Council President drew attention to a presidential statement adopted on 15 February by which the Council called on all parties to end the hostilities and not to obstruct the delivery of humanitarian aid (document S/PRST/1996/6). In the statement the Council also expressed concern that the continued conflict in Afghanistan "provides fertile ground for terrorism, arms transfers and drug trafficking" which destabilizes the whole region.

He also drew attention to another presidential statement, adopted on 30 September, expressing dismay at the brutal execution by the Taliban of former President Najibullah and others, who had sought refuge in the compound of the United Nations Special Mission to Afghanistan and calling for the immediate cessation of armed hostilities (document S/PRST/1996/40).

A joint declaration made on 4 October by the leaders of Kazakstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russian Federation, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan (document S/1996/838) was also before the Council. Those countries called on the Council to adopt urgent measures to halt the fighting and achieve a comprehensive settlement of the Afghan conflict, and to arrange for international humanitarian assistance to the civilian population and refugees. (For further details on documents S/PRST/1996/40 and S/1996/838, see Press Release SC/6280 of 16 October.)

Further before the Council was a letter dated 22 August from the President of the Council addressed to the Secretary-General apprising him of its conviction that the United Nations must continue to play a central role in international efforts towards a peaceful resolution of the Afghan conflict (document S/1996/683). In the letter, the Council takes note of proposals to promote a peaceful settlement, including a proposal from the President of Uzbekistan for an arms embargo.

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On 19 December 1995, the General Assembly adopted resolution 50/88 in which it called on States to promote peace in Afghanistan, to stop the flow of arms to all parties and to put an end to the conflict. Also by that text, the Assembly called upon States to respect Afghanistan's sovereignty and territorial integrity and to refrain from interfering in its internal affairs. It appealed to the warring parties to strictly respect international humanitarian law and not to hinder humanitarian assistance to the Afghan population. The international community was called on to respond to the inter-agency consolidated appeal for emergency humanitarian and rehabilitation assistance for Afghanistan.

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For information media. Not an official record.