SECURITY COUNCIL AUTHORIZES INCREASE OF POLICE COMPONENT OF UNITED
SECURITY COUNCIL AUTHORIZES INCREASE OF POLICE COMPONENT OF UNITED
Security Council SC/6369
3776th Meeting (AM) 16 May 1997
SECURITY COUNCIL AUTHORIZES INCREASE OF POLICE COMPONENT OF UNITED NATIONS MISSION IN BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA (UNMIBH) BY 120 PERSONNEL
Resolution 1107 (1997) Adopted Unanimously
The Security Council this morning decided to authorize an increase in the strength of the United Nations Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina (UNMIBH) by 120 police personnel in order to enable the United Nations International Police Task Force (UN-IPTF) to carry out its mandate, as set out in the conclusions of the London Peace Implementation Conference.
It took that action by unanimously adopting resolution 1107 (1997). As of 10 March, the IPTF) comprised 1,605 personnel; the authorized strength is 1,721.
Acting upon recommendations of the Secretary-General concerning the tasks of the IPTF as set out by the London Conference of December 1996, and pursuant to the IPTF mandate set out in Annex 11 of the Peace Agreement and resolution 1088 (1996), the Council urged Member States to provide qualified police monitors and other forms of assistance and support to the IPTF.
In its draft form, the resolution was sponsored by France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Portugal, Russian Federation, Sweden, United Kingdom and the United States.
The meeting, which began at 11:37 a.m., was adjourned at 11:42 a.m.
The full text of resolution 1107 (1997) is as follows:
"The Security Council,
"Recalling its resolution 1103 (1997) of 31 March 1997 concerning the United Nations Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina (UNMIBH), including the United Nations International Police Task Force (United Nations-IPTF),
"Recalling also the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Annexes thereto (collectively the Peace Agreement, S/1995/999, annex),
"Having considered the report of the Secretary-General of 14 March 1997 (S/1997/224 and Add.1) and his letter of 5 May 1997 to the President of the Security Council (S/1997/351),
"1. Decides to authorize an increase in the strength of UNMIBH by 120 police personnel, in the light of the recommendation of the Secretary-General concerning the tasks of the UN-IPTF as set out in the conclusions of the Peace Implementation Conference held in London on 4 and 5 December 1996 (S/1996/1012) and agreed by the authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in order to enable the UN-IPTF to carry out its mandate set out in Annex 11 of the Peace Agreement and resolution 1088 (1996) of 12 December 1996;
"2. Urges Member States to provide qualified police monitors and other forms of assistance and support to the UN-IPTF and in support of the Peace Agreement;
"3. Decides also to remain seized of the matter."
Documents before Council
The Secretary-General, in a letter to the President of the Security Council, states that the responsible authorities in Mostar have not acted to implement Council demands to investigate and prosecute police officers involved in the violent assault of civilians on 10 February (document S/1997/351, of 5 May). The general situation in Mostar, however, has improved in the past six weeks. Evictions from west Mostar have stopped and 100 police officers are jointly patrolling the town centre. The International Police Task Force (IPTF) has also made progress in its negotiations for the establishment of the joint Federation police force in the Neretva (Mostar) Canton.
The Secretary-General recalls that in an earlier report to the Council (documents S/1997/224 and Add.1, of 14 March) he had recommended an increase in IPTF strength by 120 personnel. In the current letter, he reiterates that recommendation and expresses the hope that the Council will respond positively to it.
Annexed to the Secretary-General's letter is the executive summary and conclusions of a report prepared by the IPTF and the Human Rights Coordination Centre entitled "Mostar -- Human rights and security situation, 1 January - 15 February", which was compiled following the request of the major international implementing organizations for details on the incidents preceding and following the violence of 10 February.
According to the report, the Principal Deputy High Representative has stated that the Federation partners "must commit themselves to draw all necessary conclusions [from that document], including personal consequences for all officials and police officers who have failed to perform their duties". The report covers the nearly 200 incidents which occurred during the period from 1 January to 15 February and shows a city gripped by ethnic tension and outbreaks of violence, unchecked by responsible police or political action.
According to the summary of the report, the incident on 10 February was a consequence of the lawlessness which flourishes in Mostar. In a period of less than five hours, 22 cases in which Croat travellers were stoned, threatened, robbed or assaulted occurred on the M‑17 highway. In nearly half of those cases, east Mostar police were reported to have been either directly responsible or to have failed to respond appropriately to actions by Bosniac civilians. That same afternoon and evening, 23 Bosniac families were forcibly evicted from their homes in west Mostar. In many cases, victims reported that the perpetrators identified themselves as police or special police.
There have been six arrests relating to two of the incidents on the M‑17, but no prosecutions in the remaining 20 cases, the summary continues. There have been no arrests of those responsible for the evictions. Although there is evidence of police involvement, little has been done to identify the police responsible, and to hold them accountable for their actions. The police have consistently failed to investigate crimes involving persons of a different ethnicity or, alternatively, to arrest suspects of their own ethnicity. The police leadership, in both east and west Mostar, has failed to provide adequate protection to persons living and travelling in the city and have often appeared to be simply instruments of the political establishment. The political leadership relies on a continuous flow of invective directing blame at "the other side", making a direct impact on tensions in the city and the atmosphere of divisiveness between the parties.
In its conclusions, the summary states that events in Mostar from 1 January to 15 February demonstrate a failure by both the political authorities and police to act responsibly and effectively in providing security for all citizens. It also cites the failure of the local authorities and the police to work together and to build common structures and institutions for the well-being of all Mostar citizens. To address the abuses identified in the report, functioning police and political institutions must be established in Mostar.
The report goes on to say that police on both sides, with the leadership and full support of political authorities, must share information and liaison to anticipate and deal with future incidents. They must investigate and act on the criminal incidents prior to, on and after the 10 February incident. In particular, the series of attacks on the M‑17 and the wave of illegal evictions in west Mostar which occurred immediately following the 10 February incident must be thoroughly investigated by the east and west Mostar police. Particular attention must be paid to the role of the police, including an in‑depth look, followed by timely and appropriate response, concerning all allegations of police involvement in criminal acts, or failure to respond adequately to crimes committed by others. Police leadership must be made professional.
Finally, police on both sides of the city must now carry out the instructions of the Federation government with respect to restructuring and reconfiguration as a single cantonal force with all urgency, the report states. In the interim, full participation in the United Police Force of Mostar is required. On the political side, functioning local institutions must be established to address incidents when they occur, rather than allowing problems to fester until "payback time".
The Secretary-General report on the activities of the United Nations Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina (UNMIBH) (documents S/1997/224 and Add.1) was welcomed by Council resolution 1103 (1997) of 31 March. In that report he recommends a strengthening of the Mission and of the International Police Task force (IPTF) to enable the force to carry out responsibilities recommended by the Brcko Implementation Conference held at Vienna on 6 and 7 March, as well as those called for by last year's second Peace Implementation Conference (also known as the "London Conference").
Should the Council approve the Brcko Conference recommendation, the Secretary-General recommends that it authorize an increase in the Mission's strength by 186 police and 11 civilian personnel. With respect to the London Conference, whose conclusions it endorsed on 12 December 1996, he recommends that the Council consider authorizing an increase of 120 police personnel for the Force, to enable it to discharge an expanded human rights mandate while still carrying out its basic monitoring functions throughout the country.
In an addendum to his report, the Secretary-General estimates that the costs associated with the additional deployment of the 186 civilian police for a period of 12 months would be approximately $13.9 million. The costs associated with deployment of the additional 120 Task Force monitors for a period of 12 months are estimated at some $9.5 million.
The Brcko Conference endorsed proposals presented by the Secretary-General's Special Representative for international policing in Brcko. Those proposals took account of the arbitration award announced on 14 February, which called for the monitoring, restructuring and retraining of the police in that area with an intensity far beyond that in other parts of the country. Specifically, they provide for the placement of one IPTF monitor in every police patrol in the jurisdiction while they work, as well as rapid initiation of police restructuring, training and human rights activities. Implementation of the proposals would require the deployment of the additional 186 IPTF monitors, together with 11 civilian personnel.
The London Conference, held on 4 and 5 December 1996, gave additional responsibilities to IPTF for investigating human rights abuses by local police forces, the report states. The IPTF Commissioner has carried out a thorough assessment in order to determine that 120 additional personnel would be needed to enable the Force to implement the human rights, training and restructuring aspects of its mandate, while not allowing its monitoring capacity to fall below acceptable levels.
In making his recommendations, the Secretary-General cautions that the proposed role for the IPTF in the Brcko area would have to be carried out in close cooperation with the Peace Stabilization Force (SFOR), the legal successor to the Implementation Force (IFOR) that was led by the North Atlantic Treaty Alliance (NATO). "This Force is currently the principal guarantor of the fragile peace that exists today in Bosnia and Herzegovina", he states.
As the IPTF would remain an unarmed force, without powers of arrest, it would require the concerted and constant support of the international community to ensure that all parties played their part in achieving the goals of the arbitration award, he adds. As with the situation in Mostar, the success of the police plan for Brcko would depend, ultimately, on the authorities on the ground and on the determination of the international community to see that those authorities live up to their commitments.
He goes on to note that the arbitration award places obligations on the authorities of the Republika Srpska, in particular, which they have so far been reluctant to implement in other parts of the entity. Those obligations relate to freedom of movement, the return of refugees and the restructuring of the police.
Reviewing the situation on the ground since the 9 December 1996 report of his predecessor, the Secretary-General says tensions have persisted between the different ethnic communities. That was reflected in the violence that erupted all too often when displaced persons attempted to return to their homes. The authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with international assistance, were still in the first three months of the "stabilization" or "consolidation" period. While admirable progress had been achieved in such areas as the establishment of joint institutions, progress in other areas remained "dangerously slow".
The Secretary-General expresses concern, in particular, about the status of cooperation with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, noting that "four of the five signatories to Annex 11 of the Peace Agreement have yet to comply with their basic undertakings in the Agreement". Continuing, he says, "I can only repeat my deep conviction that there will be no genuine peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina without justice. Reconciliation cannot take root if the people suspected of unspeakable crimes are able to move openly and live with impunity in the society."
The Secretary-General also reviews activities of the Mine Action Centre, which continues to assist in mine-clearance programmes. However, he notes that further voluntary contributions are urgently required to train and employ additional deminers, to enable the existing programmes to continue beyond 14 May, when funds will be exhausted. He also addresses the activities of the Trust Fund Unit, which continues to monitor 52 ongoing projects in Sarajevo, many of which are nearing completion.
The report also cites activities in Bosnia and Herzegovina by the following members of the United Nations system: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP); United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO); United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights; Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR); World Bank; World Food Programme (WFP); and World Health Organization (WHO).
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