SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS ANGOLA OBSERVER MISSION UNTIL 26 FEBRUARY 1999
SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS ANGOLA OBSERVER MISSION UNTIL 26 FEBRUARY 1999
SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS ANGOLA OBSERVER MISSION UNTIL 26 FEBRUARY 199919981203 Draft Resolution 1213 (1998), Adopted Unanimously, Holds UNITA Responsible for Mission's Safety in Andulo, Bailundo
The Security Council this afternoon extended the mandate of the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola (MONUA) to 26 February 1999, calling on the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) to cooperate immediately in the withdrawal of MONUA personnel from Andulo and Bailundo and holding the leadership of UNITA in Bailundo responsible for the safety and security of Mission personnel.
With its unanimous adoption of resolution 1213 (1998), the Council expressed its growing concern for the security and freedom of movement of MONUA personnel throughout Angola and called on the Government and particularly UNITA to ensure their safety.
In light of deteriorating security conditions, the Council recognized that the Secretary-General might make further recommendations regarding MONUA before 26 February. It asked him to report by 15 January 1999 on the status of the peace process, the future role and mandate of the United Nations in Angola and the force structure of the Mission.
The Council demanded that UNITA comply immediately and unconditionally with its obligations under the peace accords and the 1994 Lusaka Protocol, particularly with regard to demilitarization and the extension of State administration throughout the country. It also demanded that UNITA withdraw immediately from territories which it had occupied by military or other action.
Addressing the Council, the representative of Angola, noting that the UNITA militarist wing had taken 15 MONUA members hostage and refused to allow United Nations planes to land and evacuate them, said the present situation had not been inevitable. Her Government had repeatedly warned the Council and repeatedly alerted the international community to UNITA's violations of the Lusaka Protocol. It had asked the Council to compel the UNITA leadership to comply with its commitments, but those intercessions had not been adequately addressed.
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Additional pressure must be brought to bear to compel Mr. Savimbi to cease his warlike behaviour, she said. She insisted that the United Nations and its Member States redouble efforts to enforce sanctions against UNITA. She called on the Council to interdict all UNITA's communications links, ban the transfer of all communications equipment to UNITA, freeze its assets and enforce travel sanctions more effectively. She urged the international community to welcome UNITA Renovation Committee as a replacement for Mr. Savimbi's forces.
The meeting, which began at 1:15 p.m., was adjourned at 1:30 p.m.
Council Work Programme
As the Security Council met this afternoon to consider the situation in Angola, it had before it a report of the Secretary-General (document S/1998/1110), in which he states that no progress has been made in implementing the 1994 Lusaka Protocol and that the overall military and security situation in the country has deteriorated further. The peace process continues to be stalled and the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) still refuses to implement its commitments, including the demilitarization of its forces and the extension of State administration throughout the country.
Despite the lack of progress, the Secretary-General continues, the international community should remain engaged to dissuade the parties from a return to war. He proposes that the mandate of the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola (MONUA) be extended for three months, on the understanding that if the security situation becomes untenable, he will immediately submit further recommendations, including, if necessary, the withdrawal of MONUA.
The Secretary-General reminds both the Government and UNITA of their responsibility for ensuring the safety and security of United Nations personnel and states that any attempt to restrict the freedom of movement of peacekeepers, especially in volatile situations, is absolutely intolerable. In that connection, he deplores the death of a humanitarian worker killed in Kuito on 14 November. Because of the security situation, he has instructed MONUA to continue to adjust its deployment on the ground and to pursue the reconfiguration of the United Nations presence in Angola, as indicated in his report of 8 October.
As at 20 November, 15 MONUA personnel had not been relocated from the UNITA strongholds of Andulo and Bailundo, the report states. All efforts are being made to facilitate their withdrawal to safer areas as soon as possible. Their movement has been affected by bad weather conditions and the poor state of the airstrip in Andulo. The MONUA will continue to do everything possible to ensure the safety and security of its personnel.
The Secretary-General adds that since his report of 8 October, the dialogue between the Government and UNITA has ceased. The joint mechanisms, including the Joint Commission, are not functioning and preparations for a military showdown continue. As a result, MONUA is unable to carry out most of its mandated tasks and the prospects for reactivating the peace process look bleak.
According to the report, in the northern and north-eastern regions, the Government and UNITA forces continue to conduct extensive military operations and the free circulation of people and goods has been impeded in many areas. In the northern region, Government forces regained control of several areas and are still fighting over other provinces in the region. The UNITA forces,
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allegedly joined by some rebel elements from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, failed to capture areas around Uige, but they continue to control the eastern parts of Cuanza Norte Province. The north-eastern region is the most affected, owing to renewed military operations aimed at gaining control over the diamond-mining areas.
There can be no lasting military solution and only a political settlement on the basis of the Lusaka Protocol will avoid further suffering for the Angolan people, the Secretary-General says. The UNITA must take concrete action to implement, without further delay, all of its commitments under the Lusaka Protocol. The Secretary-General calls upon Jonas Savimbi, the UNITA leader, to respond to a letter from his Special Representative, which contains specific proposals to put the peace process back on track. He points out that the Special Representative has been unable to meet directly with Mr. Savimbi. Further, the recent abrogation by the National Assembly of Mr. Savimbi's special status might prevent all possibility of political accommodation. The Assembly's decision has been attributed to Mr. Savimbi's failure to fulfil his party's obligations under the Protocol.
During the period under review, the Special Representative travelled to South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Côte d'Ivoire, Burkina Faso and Gabon to consult with regional leaders on the ways and means of restoring the Angolan peace process. The leaders were critical of Mr. Savimbi's attitude and stressed the need to increase international pressure on him to fulfil his commitments. They also reiterated their support for the Lusaka peace process and the continued presence of the United Nations in Angola. Most stressed the need for a political solution in Angola, but also felt that the existing sanctions regime should be strengthened.
Referring to a reported statement by a government representative that unless MONUA and the Troika -- Portugal, Russian Federation, United States -- participated in a Joint Commission meeting together with the UNITA Renovation Committee, the Government would resolve the remaining issues of the Protocol "bilaterally" with the Renovation Committee, the Secretary-General says he has not received any official clarification concerning that statement.
The UNITA Renovation Committee held its general conference in mid-October with 280 delegates from 17 of the 18 Angolan provinces. They set up a Provisional Political Committee to run the movement until the next party congress and decided to retain all the UNITA deputies in the National Assembly. The issue of leadership, however, remained unresolved. Although the Renovation Committee had already designated a leader, the President of the National Assembly announced that the Committee had nominated another person, Mr. Manuvakola, as the leader of the UNITA parliamentary group.
The report goes on to say that civilian police observer patrols and monitoring activities have been seriously affected by the deteriorating security conditions, restrictions and frequent lack of cooperation from both
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local government and UNITA officials. Concerned at the attitude of the Angola National Police (ANP) towards civilians in areas previously under UNITA control, MONUA continues to seek the Government's cooperation in launching a training programme on internationally accepted police procedures and standards. The civilian police observers have also conducted regular patrols and visited the checkpoints established by the ANP and the Angolan Armed Forces (FAA). The MONUA has confirmed many reports of bribery, harassment and restrictions at these checkpoints.
The deterioration of the security situation has been accompanied by increasing reports of human rights abuses committed against the civilian population, including indiscriminate and summary killings, torture and ill-treatment, harassment and intimidation, abductions, destruction of property and forcible displacement reportedly committed during attacks on villages and ambushes by UNITA elements, the report says. Attacks and rumours of attacks, have led to the continued displacement of civilians. In Uige Province, forcible recruitment into the FAA and the ANP, and the persistent abduction of civilians by alleged UNITA forces are a source of serious concern.
The humanitarian situation has also deteriorated, the report states. Civilians forced to flee their homes bring the number of internally displaced persons since January to 331,000. The humanitarian community has concentrated on negotiating temporary settlements for these persons in areas where arable land can be provided and seeds and tools distributed. As a consequence, an enormous burden is placed on host families and communities.
The Secretary-General expresses extreme concern over the dire living conditions of the vulnerable groups in Angola. The mortality rate of almost 30 per cent among children under the age of 5 is among the world's worst. Unless the situation improves, many lives may be lost to preventable diseases. Lack of access to affected populations in approximately 50 per cent of the country prevents the humanitarian community from carrying out its activities adequately. It is vital, the Secretary-General says, that all parties in Angola respect international humanitarian law and the safety and security of relief workers and allow unimpeded access to vulnerable populations wherever they are located.
The Secretary-General has obtained the concurrence of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ) to enter into commitments in the amount of $10.9 million gross for the maintenance of MONUA for the month of November 1998. As at 31 October 1998, unpaid assessed contributions to the UNAVEM/MONUA special account amounted to $109 million.
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The Council also had before it a draft resolution (S/1998/1135) sponsored by Portugal, Russian Federation and the United States, which reads as follows:
"The Security Council,
"Reaffirming its resolutions 696 (1991) of 30 May 1991 and all subsequent relevant resolutions, in particular resolutions 864 (1993) of 15 September 1993, 1127 (1997) of 28 August 1997 and 1173 (1998) of 12 June 1998,
"Reaffirming also its firm commitment to preserve the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Angola,
"Emphasizing the validity of the "Acordos de Paz" (S/22609, annex), the Lusaka Protocol (S/1994/1441, annex) and relevant Security Council resolutions as the fundamental basis of the peace process,
"Strongly condemning the failure of the União Nacional para a Independência Total de Angola (UNITA) to implement the remaining tasks of the Lusaka Protocol, in particular the complete demilitarization of its forces and full cooperation in the immediate and unconditional extension of State administration throughout the national territory,
"Expressing its deep concern at the failure of the leader of UNITA to respond to the letter of 6 October 1998 addressed to him by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General which contained proposals for restoring the peace process, and to the letter of 24 September 1998 addressed to him by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the three Observer States to the Lusaka Protocol which called for irreversible steps towards peace (S/1998/916),
"Expressing its grave concern at the serious humanitarian impact of the impasse in the peace process and the deteriorating security conditions,
"Having considered the report of the Secretary-General of 23 November 1998 (S/1998/1110),
"1. Emphasizes that the primary cause of the crisis in Angola and of the current impasse in the peace process is the failure by the leadership of UNITA in Bailundo to comply with its obligations under the "Acordos de Paz", the Lusaka Protocol and relevant Security Council resolutions, and demands that UNITA comply immediately and without conditions with its obligations, in particular the complete demilitarization of its forces and full cooperation in the immediate and unconditional extension of State administration throughout the national territory;
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"2. Demands also that UNITA withdraw immediately from territories which it has reoccupied through military or other action;
"3. Calls on the leadership of UNITA to cooperate fully and immediately with the United Nations Observer Mission in Angola (MONUA) in the withdrawal of MONUA personnel from Andulo and Bailundo, and holds the leadership of UNITA in Bailundo responsible for their safety and security;
"4. Stresses that there can be no military solution to the conflict in Angola, and calls upon the Government of Angola and UNITA to cooperate fully with the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, including facilitation of his contacts with all those key to the implementation of the Lusaka Protocol, to seek a peaceful resolution of the crisis;
"5. Emphasizes the importance of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General maintaining contact with all elements of UNITA in Luanda in order to revive the stalled peace process and encourage the transformation of UNITA into a genuine political party;
"6. Stresses the importance of strengthening the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the full protection of all Angolan citizens throughout the national territory, in particular representatives and members of all political parties;
"7. Reiterates its concern at the continued deterioration of the humanitarian situation, especially the significant increase in the number of internally displaced persons and the increase in minelaying activity, and calls on the Government of Angola and in particular UNITA to guarantee unconditionally the safety and freedom of movement of all international humanitarian personnel, to cooperate fully with international humanitarian organizations in the delivery of emergency relief assistance to affected populations, to cease minelaying activity, and to respect international humanitarian, refugee and human rights law;
"8. Urges the international community to provide financial and other resources in order to allow the continued delivery of emergency relief assistance to vulnerable groups in Angola;
"9. Urges all Member States to support the peace process in Angola through full and immediate implementation of the measures against UNITA contained in resolutions 864 (1993), 1127 (1997) and 1173 (1998), and expresses its readiness to consider appropriate reinforcing steps in accordance with the recommendations contained in the report referred to in paragraph 13 below;
"10. Decides to extend the mandate of MONUA until 26 February 1999, and endorses the recommendation contained in the report of the Secretary-General to continue to adjust the deployment and force structure of MONUA, as needed,
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in accordance with security conditions and its ability to implement its mandate;
"11. Recognizes that the Secretary-General may revert to the Council before 26 February 1999 with further recommendations regarding MONUA in the light of security conditions on the ground;
"12. Expresses its growing concern for the security and freedom of movement throughout Angola of MONUA personnel, and calls upon the Government of Angola and in particular UNITA to ensure their safety;
"13. Requests the Secretary-General to submit a report no later than 15 January 1999 regarding the status of the peace process, the future role and mandate of the United Nations in Angola and the force structure of MONUA in the light of its ability to carry out its mandated tasks, and reiterates the request contained in its resolution 1202 (1998) of 15 October 1998 for recommendations regarding technical and other ways for Member States to improve the implementation of the measures referred to in paragraph 9 above;
"14. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter."
JOSEFA GUILHERMINA COEHLO DA CRUZ (Angola) said the Angolan peace process had experienced serious reversals because of Jonas Savimbi's refusal to honour his commitments and his pursuit of a military solution to Angola's political problems. Despite many Council resolutions, the situation in Angola remained volatile. Recently, the UNITA militarist wing, brazen in its disdain for the United Nations, had taken 15 MONUA members hostage in Andulo and Bailunda, refusing to allow United Nations planes to land and evacuate them. She condemned "the lawless acts of a desperate man who refuses to operate within the bounds of the peace accords". She urged the Council to join her condemnation of such rogue acts and recommended that all remaining MONUA personnel be consolidated into government areas.
She said the present situation in Angola had not been inevitable, as her Government had warned the Council many times of the serious problems inherent in the demobilization process of UNITA soldiers. It had repeatedly alerted the international community to violations by UNITA that had allowed it to retain a significant fighting force and to Mr. Savimbi's failure to give evidence of his personal commitment to the peace process. The Government had called for the Council to compel the UNITA leadership to comply with its commitments. Unfortunately, those intercessions were not adequately addressed and Mr. Savimbi was able to implement the military strategy that was now unfolding.
The UNITA'S actions demanded an equally strong reaction from the international community, she said. To compel Mr. Savimbi to cease his
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warlike behaviour, additional pressure must be brought to bear. She insisted that the United Nations redouble efforts to enforce sanctions against Mr. Savimbi and his personal army. She called on the Council to interdict all UNITA's communications links, ban the transfer of all communications equipment to UNITA, freeze its assets and enforce travel sanctions more effectively.
She reaffirmed her Government's decision to have no further contact with Mr. Savimbi. Since Mr. Savimbi had chosen to remove himself from the peace process, a new UNITA leadership had taken his place. She welcomed the new leadership and urged the international community to do likewise.
She endorsed the extension of MONUA's mandate, stating that a precipitous withdrawal was in no one's interest. She emphasized, however, that MONUA could not remain in Angola indefinitely. In the near future, the Government, working with the new UNITA leadership and the United Nations, must conclude the Lusaka Protocol. Angola was facing severe economic and political challenges that could no longer be placed on hold because of the whims of one man. Mr. Savimbi could no longer be allowed to hold a nation hostage. She urged the international community to continue and, if possible, increase assistance to those Angolans who had been most affected by UNITA's military attacks.
The Council then unanimously adopted the draft as resolution 1213 (1998).
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