SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS MANDATE OF MONUA UNTIL 30 JUNE
SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS MANDATE OF MONUA UNTIL 30 JUNE
SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS MANDATE OF MONUA UNTIL 30 JUNE19980429 Resolution 1164 (1998), Adopted Unanimously, Endorses Deployment Of Additional Police Observers and Drawdown of Military Personnel
The Security Council this afternoon extended the mandate of the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola (MONUA) until 30 June, and endorsed the Secretary-General's recommendation to deploy 83 additional civilian police observers following consultations with the Government of Unity and National Reconciliation.
Unanimously adopting resolution 1164 (1998), the Council also endorsed the Secretary-General's recommendations to complete the withdrawal, no later than 1 July, of all military personnel, except one infantry company, helicopter unit, the signals and medical support units and 90 military observers. The Secretary-General's recommendations are contained in his report to the Council (document S/1998/333 of 16 April).
The Council took note with appreciation other recommendations of the Secretary-General regarding the beginning of the downsizing of MONUA military observers and civilian personnel and the termination of the Mission. It expressed its intention to take a final decision by 30 June on MONUA's mandate, size and organizational structure or a follow-on United Nations presence after that date, based on further recommendations by the Secretary- General on that subject and on the status of the peace process. The Secretary-General's report, to be submitted by 17 June, is to include revised estimates of the cost of that United Nations presence.
The Council called upon the Government and the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) to complete all their remaining obligations under the "Acordos de Paz" (Peace Accords), the Lusaka Protocol and relevant Security Council resolutions, including the normalization of State administration throughout Angola, as well as disarmament of the civilian population.
By the text, the Council strongly reiterated its demand that UNITA stop its pattern of delays and linkages, and cooperate immediately and without conditions in completing the normalization process. There are still some 60 localities where central authority has not been established, including the UNITA strongholds of Andulo and Bailundo, according to the Secretary-General. The Government was also called upon to refrain from any action, including the excessive use of force, which might undermine the normalization process or
Security Council - 1a - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
lead to renewed hostilities. The Council encouraged the Government to give priority to actions that contributed to the successful conclusion of the peace process.
The Council took note of steps taken by UNITA regarding some of its obligations set out in paragraphs 2 and 3 of resolution 1127 (1997) of 28 August 1997, relating to closure of its radio station Vorgan and demobilization of its forces. The Council reaffirmed its readiness to review travel restrictions it imposed on senior UNITA officials and adult members of their families -- specified in paragraph 4 of the same resolution -- or to consider the imposition of additional measures such as trade and financial restrictions provided for in paragraph 9 of that resolution.
By other terms of the text, the Council strongly condemned attacks by UNITA members on MONUA and international personnel, as well as Angolan national authorities, including the police, and demanded that UNITA immediately stop such attacks. The Government and particularly UNITA were called upon to guarantee unconditionally the safety, security and freedom of movement of all United Nations and international personnel. It urged MONUA to investigate promptly the recent attack in N'gove.
By the text, the Council called upon all Member States to implement fully and without delay the measures specified in paragraph 4 of resolution 1127 (1997) by which it imposed travel restrictions on senior UNITA officials and adult members of their families. By other provisions of that resolution, the Council prohibited the flight of aircraft by or for UNITA and the supply of aircraft or their components to UNITA. States were required to deny access to their territories by any aircraft departing from or going to a place not included on a list to be supplied by the Government of Angola.
By today's text, the Council reiterated its request that Member States with information on such flights and other actions prohibited under paragraph 4 of resolution 1127 (1997) provide it to the sanctions-monitoring Committee established under resolution 864 (1993). It requested the Secretary-General to report on those violations by UNITA and certain Member States in the report he is to submit to the Council by 17 June.
The Vice-Minister of Territorial Administration of Angola, Higino Carneiro, stressed that his Government was committed to promoting democracy and good governance, promoting multiparty politics, observing international norms on human rights, and stabilizing and energizing the economy. It would begin immediately consultations with the Secretary-General's Special Representative to ensure that all issues concerning MONUA were addressed -- specifically, the key issues described in the draft resolution. He assured the Council of his Government's full support towards maintaining peace, promoting national reconciliation and rebuilding the country.
Security Council - 1b - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
The representative of the United States said that her country was increasingly concerned that the Government of Angola and UNITA were meeting the letter, but not the spirit, of the Lusaka Protocol. It was time to set violence aside and to heal the wounds of so many years of war. The withdrawal of MONUA must not be precipitous, she said, and added that the international community must ensure that its years of investment in peace was not jeopardized in the final months. The goal of the international community should be to reinforce stability by gradually transferring the non-military functions of MONUA to other United Nations or international agencies. During that process, the United States fully expected both the Government of Angola and UNITA to give full support and cooperation to MONUA, she said.
Speaking for the European Union and associated States, the representative of the United Kingdom said peace in Angola depended not only on the willingness of the parties to meet their commitments, but also on the absence of conflict there. The UNITA's persistent attempts to frustrate MONUA's work through intimidation must cease, he said. He condemned the armed attacks against MONUA, other international personnel and civilians, and looked to UNITA to cooperate with MONUA in identifying those responsible.
As the largest troop and civilian police contributor to MONUA, Portugal was deeply concerned with recent attacks against the personnel of MONUA, the Angolan authorities and the civilian population, its representative said. Calling for the completion of the extension of central administration as a prerequisite to lasting peace in Angola, he said the de facto existence of two competing power centres was unacceptable.
Statements were also made by the representatives of Brazil, Russian Federation, Kenya, France, Sweden, Slovenia, Bahrain, China, Gabon, Costa Rica, Gambia and Japan.
The meeting, which was called to order at 12:11 p.m., was adjourned at 1:26 p.m.
Council Work Programme
The Council met this afternoon to consider the situation in Angola. It had before it a report of the Secretary-General on the status of the implementation of the peace process in Angola (document S/1998/333), containing recommendations regarding the modalities of United Nations presence in Angola after 30 April, submitted pursuant to Council resolution 1157 (1998) of 20 March.
In that report, the Secretary-General states that he remains convinced of the need for the continued active involvement of the United Nations in that country and recommends extending the mandate of the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola (MONUA) for two months, until 30 June. Its current mandate expires on 30 April. Should the Security Council decide to extend the Mission's mandate, he writes, no additional requirements will arise beyond the $140.8 million proposed budget for the period 1 July 1998 to 30 June 1999 already submitted to the General Assembly for its consideration.
The Secretary-General states that during the reporting period, significant progress has been achieved in the Angolan peace process. Although the remaining tasks under the Lusaka Protocol were not fully completed by the 31 March deadline agreed to by the two paries -- the Government of Angola and the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) -- most of the tasks contained in the timetable for the implementation of the Protocol have now been carried out. The Government of Angola has announced the legalization of UNITA as a political party, appointed governors and other officials nominated by UNITA, and granted special status to Jonas Savimbi as the leader of the largest opposition party.
Two continuing areas of concern are the slow pace of the implementation of the extension of State administration, which was to have been completed by 31 March, and the continued presence of armed elements and troops that have not yet been demobilized, the report states. The Secretary-General urges both parties, especially UNITA, to conclude the process by the end of this month. The conclusion of the peace process depends on the full demobilization of UNITA, he writes, noting the presence of unregistered armed elements, residual troops and absentees in the demobilization process.
Other sources of concern are the increase in armed attacks against the Angolan national police, local government authorities and innocent civilians allegedly perpetrated by UNITA elements, the Secretary-General writes. He deplores the fact that the security of MONUA personnel and property was undermined in some areas, and that UNITA continued to impose restrictions on United Nations activities in some regions under its control. He reminds both parties of their responsibility for ensuring the safety of all United Nations personnel in Angola.
Security Council - 3 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
The Secretary-General recommends that MONUA's substantive components continue their operations until the end of 1998, at reduced levels after September/October. From 1999, United Nations activities -- mainly carried out by system programmes, funds and agencies -- would focus on the consolidation of national reconciliation, good governance, human rights and socio-economic recovery and development. There was also need for United Nations mediation to conclude implementation of the remaining Lusaka Protocol provisions, conduct demining activities and assist in stabilizing the security situation. The Secretary-General's Special Representative would continue to provide his good offices and chair the Joint Commission through 1998. (The Commission was established under the 1994 Lusaka Protocol to monitor the implementation of the Peace Accords signed on 31 May 1991 by the parties.)
The political affairs and human rights components will remain deployed at the present level until September/October, the report continues. After that time, the Secretary-General will begin to gradually downsize the political component and will explore the transfer of operational responsibility for the human rights component to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.
The number of civilian police sites should be increased from the current 46 sites to 51, the report says. In several areas where State administration has been extended, security situations have deteriorated and civilian police observers and military observers have been called on to investigate attacks against government targets and acts of banditry. The number of civilian police observers should be increased by 83, as authorized by the Council in its resolution 1157 (1998), in order for the Mission to fulfil its mandate. The deployment of those personnel is expected to take place in May and June, he adds.
On the military component, MONUA has prepared a plan for a phased withdrawal -- between late April and 1 July -- of 595 personnel out of a total of 1,045 currently deployed, according to the text. The remaining military personnel will remain in Angola until the end of 1998, with their repatriation dependent on the final decision on terminating MONUA. Through September/ October, 90 military observers will be retained to monitor the completion of residual military tasks. Depending on the situation on the ground, they will then be repatriated.
In resolution 1157 (1998), the Council indicated that the military component of MONUA should be further reduced no later than 1 July, the Secretary-General recalls. In light of the volatile situation in some areas of the country, as the drawdown of United Nations troops proceeds, he may be forced to redeploy unarmed military and civilian personnel to more secure areas and if necessary, repatriate them, he notes.
Security Council - 4 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
The Council had before it a draft resolution (document S/1998/349), the text of which reads as follows:
"The Security Council,
"Reaffirming its resolution 696 (1991) of 30 May 1991 and all subsequent relevant resolutions,
"Expressing its firm commitment to preserve the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Angola,
"Having considered the report of the Secretary-General of 17 April 1998 (S/1998/333),
"Welcoming the recent steps by the Government of Unity and National Reconciliation (GURN) and the Uniao para a Independencia Total de Angola (UNITA) toward completing the remaining tasks of the Lusaka Protocol (S/1994/1441, annex), including promulgation of the law granting special status to the leader of UNITA, the appointment of the remaining governors and vice-governors nominated by UNITA, agreement on a list of ambassadors nominated by UNITA, cessation of broadcasts by Radio Vorgan, and the arrival in Luanda of senior officials of UNITA to prepare for the establishment of UNITA headquarters in the capital,
"1. Calls upon the GURN and in particular UNITA to complete all remaining obligations under the 'Acordos de Paz' (S/22609, annex), the Lusaka Protocol and relevant Security Council resolutions, including the normalization of State administration throughout the national territory as well as disarmament of the civilian population;
"2. Strongly reiterates its demand that UNITA stop its pattern of delays and linkages and cooperate immediately and without conditions in completing the normalization of State administration throughout the national territory, including in particular in Andulo and Bailundo;
"3. Takes note of steps taken by UNITA regarding some of the obligations set out in paragraphs 2 and 3 of resolution 1127 (1997) of 28 August 1997, and reaffirms its readiness to review the measures specified in paragraph 4 of resolution 1127 (1997) or to consider the imposition of additional measures in accordance with paragraphs 8 and 9 of resolution 1127 (1997);
"4. Strongly condemns the attacks by members of UNITA on the personnel of the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola (MONUA), international
Security Council - 5 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
personnel and Angolan national authorities, including the police, demands that UNITA immediately stop such attacks, and urges MONUA to investigate promptly the recent attack in N'gove;
"5. Calls upon the GURN and in particular UNITA to guarantee unconditionally the safety, security and freedom of movement of all United Nations and international personnel;
"6. Also calls upon the GURN to refrain from any action, including the excessive use of force, which might undermine the process of normalization of State administration or lead to renewed hostilities, and encourages the GURN to continue to give priority to peaceful actions that contribute to the successful conclusion of the peace process;
"7. Reiterates its belief that a meeting in Angola between the President of the Republic of Angola and the leader of UNITA could facilitate the successful conclusion of the peace process and accelerate the process of national reconciliation;
"8. Decides to extend the mandate of MONUA until 30 June 1998;
"9. Reaffirms paragraph 6 of resolution 1157 (1998) of 20 March 1998, and endorses the recommendation of the Secretary-General to complete the withdrawal of all military personnel, with the exception of one infantry company, the helicopter unit, the signals and medical support units and 90 military observers, no later than 1 July 1998, and in accordance with paragraph 38 of his report of 17 April 1998;
"10. Endorses the recommendation of the Secretary-General in his above- mentioned report to deploy 83 additional civilian police observers, as authorized by resolution 1157 (1998), following consultations with the GURN;
"11. Takes note with appreciation of the recommendations of the Secretary-General contained in section IX of his report of 17 April 1998 regarding the beginning of the drawdown of the military observers and civilian personnel of MONUA and the termination of MONUA, and expresses its intention to take a final decision by 30 June 1998 on the mandate, size and organizational structure of MONUA or a follow-on United Nations presence after that date, based on progress in the peace process and in light of the report referred to in paragraph 12 below;
"12. Requests the Secretary-General to submit a report by 17 June 1998 on the status of the peace process, with further recommendations regarding the mandate, size and organizational structure of MONUA or a follow-on United Nations presence after 30 June 1998 and revised estimates of the cost of that United Nations presence;
Security Council - 6 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
"13. Expresses its appreciation to the Chairman of the Committee created pursuant to resolution 864 (1993) who visited Angola and other interested countries and reinforced the need for full and effective implementation of the measures specified in paragraph 4 of resolution 1127 (1997) in order to achieve compliance by UNITA with its obligations under the Lusaka Protocol and relevant Security Council resolutions;
"14. Calls upon all Member States to implement fully and without delay the measures specified in paragraph 4 of resolution 1127 (1997), reiterates its request that Member States having information on flights and other actions prohibited in paragraph 4 of resolution 1127 (1997) provide this information to the Committee created pursuant to resolution 864 (1993), and requests the Secretary-General to report on these violations by UNITA and certain Member States in the report referred to in paragraph 12 above;
"15. Expresses its appreciation to the Secretary-General, his Special Representative and the personnel of MONUA for assisting the Government of Angola and UNITA to implement the peace process;
"16. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter."
HIGINO CARNEIRO, Vice-Minister of Territorial Administration of Angola, emphasized that in recent weeks good progress had been made in the implementation of the Lusaka Protocol. He also stressed that there was more to be done -- particularly concerning the extension of State administration into all areas of Angola, the cessation of violent acts by UNITA against MONUA personnel and Angolan civilians, and the more active participation of UNITA in promoting peace and national reconciliation in Angola. He emphasized the critical importance his Government placed on the successful implementation of the Lusaka Protocol in the very near future. To that end, his Government reassured the international community of its full support towards maintaining peace, promoting national reconciliation and rebuilding the country.
Furthermore, he stressed that his Government was committed to promoting democracy and good governance, promoting multiparty politics, observing international norms on human rights, and stabilizing and energizing the economy. His Government would begin immediately consultations with the Secretary-General's Special Representative to ensure that all issues concerning MONUA were addressed -- specifically, the key issues described in the draft resolution before the Council.
He reiterated his Government's commitment to the peace process and importantly, into the post-Lusaka Protocol era. At the same time, Angola hoped that the United Nations and the international community would continue
Security Council - 7 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
to support peace and reconciliation and to help Angola rebuild those institutions that were vital to ensuring a stable and prosperous future for the country.
Sir JOHN WESTON (United Kingdom) spoke for the European Union, as well as Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Cyprus, Iceland and Norway. He said he was encouraged by recent progress in implementing the peace process in Angola. However, he was concerned at the continuing slow progress in extending State administration. The onus remained on UNITA to cooperate fully and to remove obstacles to such administration in several localities. Further, UNITA must forsake the military option and achieve complete transition to a political party, participating as it should in a transparent democratic process and in the country's future development. Peace in Angola depended not only on the willingness of both parties to meet their commitments, but also on the absence of armed conflict.
The UNITA's persistent attempts to frustrate MONUA's work through intimidation must cease, he said. He condemned the armed attacks against MONUA, other international personnel and civilians, and looked to UNITA to cooperate with MONUA in identifying those responsible. He deplored the recent reports of renewed mine-laying and called for such activity to cease immediately. The Union encouraged the long-delayed meeting between President dos Santos and Jonas Savimbi, UNITA leader, to take place as soon as possible.
The Union supported the Secretary-General's recommendation to extend MONUA's mandate for a further two months and to draw down the military component, he said. It also endorsed his recommendation to strengthen the civilian police component of the Mission. Although the United Nations had a key role to play, the people and Government of Angola must continue to bear the primary responsibility for their own well-being. As the leading contributor to Angola's rehabilitation, the European Union would continue to play a full part in assisting Angolans to consolidate national reconciliation and revitalize their society and economy. While there were grounds for cautious optimism, the peace process was not yet complete, and there were very real risks of a reversal during these final months.
HENRIQUE R. VALLE (Brazil) said that despite accomplishments achieved recently, such as legalization of UNITA as a political party, nomination of provincial governors from UNITA and the closure of UNITA Radio Vorgan broadcasts, some important issues were yet to be resolved The extension of State administration throughout the country had not reached about 65 localities, including the Andulo and Bailundo areas. The UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi and other leaders had not moved to Luanda. Some sources continued to indicate that UNITA still had a consistent military capability.
Security Council - 8 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
He said that in view of the prevailing situation in Angola, extension of the MONUA mandate for two months until 30 June was the most sensible decision to be taken. After 10 years of United Nations presence in Angola, he said the time when MONUA would definitely leave the country was approaching. The perspective of finalizing the tasks envisaged in the Lusaka Protocol gave the sense that soon the international community could redirect its involvement in Angola. He expressed the hope that peace could be consolidated and that Angolans could move to the long-awaited situation of stability and prosperity.
ANTONIO MONTEIRO (Portugal) said he concurred with the Secretary-General that the conclusion of the peace process depended on UNITA's full demobilization. At the same time, it would be unfair to not recognize progress already achieved, and Portugal warmly welcomed recent steps by both parties to complete remaining tasks of the Protocol.
Trust was a rare political commodity in Angola, he said. It would take years to overcome mutual fears and suspicion. War had been the rule in Angola over the last decades. The completion of the extension of central administration to UNITA was a prerequisite for a lasting peace. The establishment of central authority should have been completed, and excuses for further delays were not credible. The de facto existence of two competing centres of power was not acceptable. The 1992 elections were valid, and UNITA's leadership should focus on discussing with the Government, in Luanda, the steps both parties needed to consolidate peace. That step would require the extension of central administration. After that, it would become apparent that the peace process was irreversible. By then, the Council could revisit the issue of sanctions against UNITA.
Portugal was deeply concerned with and condemned the recent attacks against MONUA personnel, Angolan authorities and the civilian population, he said. As the largest troop and civilian police contributor to MONUA, Portugal demonstrated its belief in a successful conclusion of the peace process. He hoped that international support would continue.
SERGEY LAVROV (Russian Federation) said the Government of Angola had essentially fulfilled its obligations, while UNITA had also seized the operation of its radio Vorgan. A headquarters was being established for UNITA. At the same time, serious problems remained. Residual armed UNITA elements had been attacking MONUA and other international personnel. Such acts should be immediately stopped. It was essential to warn UNITA that easing or stepping up sanctions against it depended on its actions. He rejected attempts to resolve problems by force. He said the resolution before the Council provided opportunities for furthering the Angolan peace process. United Nations presence in the country after 1 July would depend on progress made. His delegation would support the draft before the Council.
Security Council - 9 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
NJUGUNA M. MAHUGU (Kenya) said there was need for an urgent appeal to the parties to complete the peace process. In particular, he said, the questions of disarming the civilian population, of ensuring security of the UNITA leader and of concluding normalization of State administration throughout the country must be attended to with urgent determination if the peace process was to succeed. The process of national reconciliation could not be said to have begun until the leaders of both parties truly initiated regular and direct dialogue with each other.
On the question of sanctions, he said that during his recent visit to the region as Chairman of the Sanctions Committee, he had found that the sanctions regime was working effectively. There was political will on the part of Member States to ensure compliance with the provisions of Council resolutions. Nevertheless, there were gaps that needed to be filled by Member States in an attempt to fully implement the measures, which would contribute to the peace process.
ALAIN DEJAMMET (France) said it was necessary to complete the extension of State administration. Further, the long-awaited meeting between the leaders of the two parties should take place. Despite progress, the situation remained precarious on the ground, and in some areas there had been heightened violence. Attacks against United Nations personnel must come to a halt. Armed combat must yield to democratic struggle. During the Council's debate last week on the Secretary-General's report on conflict in Africa, it had become apparent that successes had been made through peacekeeping efforts. He expressed appreciation for those who had been involved.
France supported the Secretary-General's recommendations for extending the Mission's mandate and reducing its military component, he said. The Council would make a subsequent decision after a further report from the Secretary-General. Experience in recent years suggested the importance of prudence. The Angolan people must know that the United Nations would remain at their side to help them in reconstruction and national development.
HANS DAHLGREN (Sweden) expressed support for the draft resolution. Noting that the United Nations presence should adapt to developments on the ground, he welcomed the strengthening of the civilian police component and the human rights element, both of which would help strengthen the rule of law.
Welcoming the recent progress in the political process, he condemned attacks against humanitarian actors, and urged MONUA to investigate the attack last week in N'gove. The United Nations could continue to contribute to the country's efforts to consolidate peace. A destabilizing vacuum must be avoided, and sufficient resources must be assigned for the remaining tasks.
Security Council - 10 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
Peace and development in Angola depended on the will and determination of the Angolan people, he said. There was a need for further action to deal with the difficult social situation in Angola. Sweden was committed to continuing its long-standing support for the country's peace and national reconciliation.
DANILO TüRK (Slovenia) said there was discrepancy between the positive political atmosphere and the situation on the ground. The remaining steps of the Lusaka Protocol must be completed, including extending State administration to UNITA-held areas. The UNITA still wielded power over some 60 districts in the country's heartland. The return of UNITA leader Jonas Savimbi to Lusaka, while not specified in the Lusaka Protocol, would provide a powerful symbol in support of the peace process. The political climate in Angola was one of lingering mistrust and insecurity. Slovenia endorsed the call on the Angolan Government to give priority to peaceful actions in its efforts to consolidate authority in the country. It supported the Secretary- General's recommendation to strengthen MONUA's civilian police component.
Sustained international efforts to maintain a productive dialogue between the Government and UNITA, to foster national reconciliation and promote confidence were essential. Slovenia supported the extension of MONUA's mandate for another two months. The planned withdrawal of the military component of MONUA should not leave the observers on the ground without the option of relying on an emergency United Nations military protection.
JASSIM MOHAMMED BUALLAY (Bahrain) said considerable progress had been accomplished recently. The Angolan Government had recognized the legality of UNITA and posts of vice governors given to it. He said UNITA had demilitarized its forces and stopped broadcasts from its radio station. It was also preparing to set up its headquarters in the Angolan capital. Those actions were positive. It was encouraging that definite progress had been made. Attacks on civilians, as well as on MONUA personnel, by armed UNITA elements could hold up the peace process and the progress achieved. He called upon UNITA to halt those actions. His delegation would support the draft resolution.
SHEN GUOFANG (China) said the draft resolution once again urged UNITA to take effective measures to enable State administration to be extended. He called on the parties concerned to ensure the safety of United Nations personnel and endorsed the Secretary-General's recommendation on the phasing out of military personnel. In the post-conflict stage, the international community and financial institutions should provide increased assistance. Stressing the importance of taking careful consideration of the views of the Angolan Government, he said his delegation would vote in favour of the draft.
Security Council - 11 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
DENIS DANGUE REWAKA (Gabon) said the extension of the mandate to 30 June was in consonance with the United Nations desire to see the peace process in Angola achieve its goals in conformity with the pertinent resolutions of the Security Council. The Council had stated its concern about the continued lack of security in several areas of the country. The Secretary-General's recent report, and the additional information provided by his Special Representative during informal consultations, had indicated that considerable progress had been made in the peace process. The Government of Unity and National Reconciliation had taken several encouraging steps. For its part, UNITA had ceased the broadcasts of Radio Vorgan. His delegation hoped Angola would achieve stability to devote itself to development in the social and economic spheres. His delegation would vote in favour of the draft.
MELVIN SAENZ BIOLLEY (Costa Rica) said new information and events showed that the current situation in Angola was crucial for the peace process. He noted that security arrangements had been agreed upon for UNITA leaders to return to Luanda, and that a high-level UNITA delegation had moved to Luanda. The parties were now fulfilling their obligations. He observed that UNITA was nevertheless not abiding by some of its obligations, and he condemned attacks by its armed elements on MONUA personnel and civilians. Although the security situation remained difficult, humanitarian activities were continuing. He drew attention to the hazards posed by landmines and urged continuation of demining activities.
He agreed with the programme of the United Nations system from conflict- resolution to peace-building activities, and expressed support for the Secretary-General's recommendations for the restructuring of MONUA. Noting the economic and financial problems faced by the country, he expressed the hope that new approaches would be used by international financial organizations towards assisting Angola. He welcomed actions by neighbouring countries to make the sanctions effective, paid tribute to the Secretary- General's Special Representative and urged the parties to continue to fulfil their obligations under the Lusaka Protocol. His delegation would support the draft resolution before the Council.
NANCY SODERBERG (United States) said her country was increasingly concerned that the Government of Angola and UNITA were meeting the letter, but not the spirit, of the Lusaka Protocol. Although UNITA had declared its troops to be demobilized, reports were being received that armed UNITA units existed and were involved in attacks against United Nations and international personnel, as well as against Angolan national authorities. The Government of Angola, for its part, must ensure that the national police carried out its duties with regard to the normalization of State administration in a manner that promoted reconciliation. If there were abuses by government authorities during that difficult process, those responsible must be brought to justice by
Security Council - 12 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
the Government. It was time to set violence aside and to heal the wounds of so many years of war.
The United States supported the draft resolution, which would contribute to the transformation of MONUA from peacekeeping operation to the observer mission it was originally intended to be. She said the withdrawal of MONUA must not be precipitous, and the international community must ensure that its years of investment in peace was not jeopardized in the final months. The draft resolution provided the right balance. The goal of the international community should be to reinforce stability by gradually transferring the non- military functions of MONUA to other United Nations or international agencies. During that process, the United States fully expected both the Government of Angola and UNITA to give full support and cooperation to MONUA.
MAUDO TOURAY (Gambia) said the parties to the conflict should comply fully with their obligations under the Lusaka Protocol. The slow rate at which State administration was being extended was disappointing. The collection of unauthorized weapons was an increasingly urgent priority. The draft called for the civilian population to be disarmed; that was in the right direction.
The precarious security situation in some areas was another matter of concern. The request for further investigation of armed attacks was another step in the right direction. The UNITA's delaying policy was not beneficial to the peace process. The Council must send clear signals to it, to indicate that the international community was prepared to take severe measures against any steps to stall or reverse the peace process.
The achievements of the peace process required further consolidation, he said. His delegation supported extending the Mission's mandate. It also supported the follow-on interventions suggested by the Secretary-General in his report. Without such activities, the successes of MONUA would be left in a fragile state, leading to a possible return to square one. He encouraged the Secretary-General, as envisaged in the draft resolution, to provide proposals about the modalities for pursuing peace-consolidating activities. His delegation would vote in favour of its adoption.
The President of the Council, HISASHI OWADA (Japan), speaking in his national capacity, recalled that for nearly a decade, the United Nations had been involved in establishing peace in Angola, with the first peacekeeping operation being launched in 1989. On the whole, the Government of Unity and National Reconciliation and UNITA had been pursuing the path for national reconciliation under the Lusaka Protocol. The Council seriously condemned attacks against several towns and villages in Angola by well-organized and well-equipped militia. Such attacks could destroy confidence created by efforts of both parties.
Security Council - 13 - Press Release SC/6509 3876th Meeting (PM) 29 April 1998
The Angolan peace process had now reached its final and crucial stage, he said. The next step for the United Nations was to consolidate durable peace in that country. Before the international community could declare that such peace had been achieved, a number of political issues must be resolved. Jonas Savimbi must move his headquarters to Luanda, and he and President dos Santos must pledge cooperation for nation building through a face-to-face meeting. Only when such parties had translated their declared political will into action would the international community be certain that the conflict had been overcome.
The fact that the draft resolution before the Council extended the Mission's mandate by only two months indicated understanding that the peace process was entering its final phase, he said. He called on both parties to finalize the reconciliation process. Given the critical stage of the peace process, and in view of the crucial role played by MONUA, he called on UNITA to refrain from acts of violence against the Mission, the Angolan police and the civilian population. Further, the Government of Angola should refrain from excessive use of force. Both parties should focus their efforts on fully implementing the Lusaka Protocol and cooperate in good faith for national peace and reconciliation. His delegation was going to vote in favour of the draft resolution.
The Council then unanimously adopted the text as resolution 1164 (1998).
* *** *