|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
5652nd Meeting (AM)
SECURITY COUNCIL, EXTENDING MANDATE OF UNITED NATIONS MISSION IN LIBERIA, ASKS
SECRETARY-GENERAL TO PRESENT DETAILED PLAN FOR OPERATION’S DRAWDOWN
The Security Council this morning extended the mandate of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), which was to expire tomorrow at midnight, until 30 September, while requesting the Secretary-General to present a detailed drawdown plan for the operation no later than 45 days before mandate expiration.
Unanimously adopting resolution 1750 (2007), the Council further decided to include an additional element to UNMIL’s mandate, by providing administrative and related support and security for activities conducted in Liberia by the Special Court for Sierra Leone. Those activities would be carried out on a cost-reimbursable basis and with the consent of the Government of Liberia.
The meeting began at 10:10 a.m. and ended at 10:13 a.m.
The full text of resolution 1750 (2007) reads as follows:
“The Security Council,
“Recalling its resolutions and statements by its President concerning the situations in Liberia and the subregion, in particular its resolution 1509 (2003) of 19 September 2003, 1712 (2006) of 29 September 2006, and its resolution 1626 (2005) of 19 September 2005,
“Welcoming the Secretary-General’s report of 15 March 2007 (S/2007/151),
“Further welcoming the continuing steps being taken by the Government of Liberia to improve governance and combat corruption, as well as the significant progress made in regaining government control over Liberia’s natural resources,
“Expressing its appreciation for the continuing financial and other support provided by the international community, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the African Union (AU) for the Liberian peace consolidation process,
“Acknowledging and commending the work of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), under the leadership of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, for the important role it continues to play in supporting peace and stability in Liberia, and welcoming the close cooperation between UNMIL and the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI), as well as with neighbouring Governments, in coordinating security activities in the border areas in the subregion,
“Noting with appreciation the substantial progress made in the reintegration of ex-combatants, and recognizing that further progress will depend on the availability of formal sector employment for ex-combatants,
“Welcoming UNMIL’s policy to promote and protect the rights of women and calling on Liberian authorities to continue their efforts to enhance cooperation with the United Nations country team and civil society, in order to aid in efforts to combat sexual exploitation and abuse,
“Recognizing that significant challenges remain in the consolidation of Liberia’s post-conflict transition, including massive development and reconstruction needs, the reform of the judiciary, extension of the rule of law throughout the country, the development of the Liberian security forces and security architecture, and consolidation of State authority,
“Reiterating the continuing need for UNMIL’s support for the security of the Special Court for Sierra Leone,
“Determining that the situation in Liberia continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security in the region,
“Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,
“1. Decides the mandate of the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) shall be extended until 30 September 2007;
“2. Reaffirms its intention to authorize the Secretary-General to redeploy troops, as may be needed, between UNMIL and UNOCI on a temporary basis in accordance with the provisions of resolution 1609 (2005);
“3. Requests that the Secretary-General present a detailed drawdown plan for the mission in his next report to the Council, scheduled for June, which should include specific recommendations on force levels and options for a drawdown, and which should be presented no later than 45 days prior to the expiration of UNMIL’s mandate and to continue to inform the Council on progress on the stabilization of Liberia, with reference to the broad benchmarks laid out in his report of 12 September 2006;
“4. Calls on the Government of Liberia, in close coordination with UNMIL, to take further steps towards achieving those benchmarks with a view to a phased, gradual consolidation, drawdown and withdrawal of UNMIL’s troop contingent, as the situation permits and without compromising the security of Liberia;
“5. Notes the intention of the Special Court for Sierra Leone to reach agreement with the Government of Liberia on carrying out a programme of activities in Liberia, and decides that UNMIL’s mandate shall include the following additional element: to provide, within its capabilities and areas of deployment and without prejudice to the performance of its other mandated tasks, administrative and related support and security, on a cost-reimbursable basis, for activities conducted in Liberia by the Special Court for Sierra Leone with the consent of the Government of Liberia;
The Council met to consider the Secretary-General’s latest progress report on the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) (document S/2007/151), which notes that, despite numerous successes in bolstering peace and furthering economic progress, the impoverished country still faces many obstacles, including poverty, high unemployment and incapacitated public services. Calling on the Council to extend the Mission’s mandate for another year, the Secretary-General says that, although the West African nation “continues to make steady progress in consolidating peace, stability and democracy, as well as in promoting economic recovery”, in his report, it “still faces significant reconstruction and development challenges arising from 14 years of civil strife”.
The report points to the threat posed to stability stemming by high unemployment, including among former combatants and deactivated security personnel, noting that it must be addressed through labour-intensive employment opportunities in the short term, and the creation of sustainable jobs by a revitalized economy in the long term.
Further, the report states the progress of Liberia’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission is being hindered by management, personnel and budgetary difficulties, which must be resolved urgently so the Commission can continue its valuable work of ensuring lasting peace.
“Unpredictable situations” in neighbouring Côte d’Ivoire and Guinea also threaten Liberia’s stability, the report warns, recommending continued cooperation among UNMIL, the United Nations Mission in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI) and patrols by the Sierra Leonean and Guinean armed forces in border areas.
Calling on the international community to continue its support for Liberia, which is seeking to rebuild after the civil war that killed almost 150,000 people and sent 850,000 more fleeing across its borders, the Secretary-General lauds the enthusiasm displayed at the Liberia Partners’ Forum, a consortium of donors, last month, and stresses the importance of assisting the Government in institution and capacity building. International help is crucial in helping the State reassert control over its natural resources, including its rubber plantations, among the world’s largest.
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