Security Council Presidential Statement Stresses Need for Comprehensive Strategy to Restore Peace, Stability in Somalia
Security Council Presidential Statement Stresses Need for Comprehensive Strategy to Restore Peace, Stability in Somalia
|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
6494th Meeting (AM & PM)
Security Council Presidential Statement Stresses Need for Comprehensive
Strategy to Restore Peace, Stability in Somalia
Speakers Urge Completion of Outstanding Tasks as Transition
Period Nears End, Criticize Legislature’s Unilateral Mandate Extension
Stressing the need for a comprehensive strategy to encourage the establishment of peace and stability in Somalia through the collaborative efforts of all stakeholders, the Security Council called today for an increased United Nations presence and greater coherence of the Organization’s activities in the country.
As the Council held a day-long open debate on the subject “Comprehensive strategy for the realization of peace and security in Somalia”, Li Baodong (China), its President for this month, read out a statement urging Somalia’s Transitional Federal Institutions to broaden and consolidate the reconciliation process, intensify efforts to complete outstanding transitional tasks, and prioritize the timely completion of the constitution and the delivery of basic services to the population in order to ensure economic and social development.
Noting that the transition period would end in August 2011, the Council strongly urged the Transitional Federal Institutions to engage in a process to reach agreement on post-transitional arrangements in a more constructive, open and transparent manner that would promote broader political dialogue and participation. Those principles were essential for future cooperation between the international community and the Transitional Federal Institutions. It regretted the Transitional Federal Parliament’s unilateral decision to extend its own mandate without carrying out necessary reforms, and urged the Transitional Federal Institutions to refrain from any further unilateral actions.
Emphasizing the importance of strengthening the Somali security forces, the Council urged Member States, as well as regional and international organizations to contribute generously and promptly to the United Nations Trust Fund for the Somali security institutions. While recognizing the progress made by the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and national security forces in consolidating security and stability in Mogadishu, the Council stressed the importance of predictable, reliable and timely resources for the Mission and called on the international community urgently to make contributions, without caveats, to the United Nations Trust Fund for AMISOM or directly in support of the Mission.
The Council expressed serious concern at the worsening humanitarian situation, the impact of drought and the decline in humanitarian funding, urging all Member States to contribute to current and future consolidated humanitarian appeals. It strongly condemned the targeting and obstruction of humanitarian aid by Al-Shabaab and other armed groups, demanding that all parties ensure full, safe and unhindered access for the timely delivery of such assistance.
Gravely concerned about the threat posed by piracy off Somalia’s coast, especially its extended range into the western Indian Ocean and increased violence by pirates, the Council condemned such violence in the strongest terms, recognizing that ongoing instability in Somalia had contributed to piracy and stressing the need for a comprehensive response to tackle the phenomenon and its underlying causes.
Opening the debate, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said: “ Somalia urgently needs our help.” AMISOM would be more effective if it had more resources, including helicopters and support for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. A viable force was as much about troop numbers as it was about the assets supporting them, he said, noting that there were critical gaps in the United Nations support package to AMISOM and appealing to States both to increase their contributions and to enable the Mission to reach its full strength.
AMISOM troops from Burundi and Uganda had made the ultimate sacrifice in the cause of peace, as had numerous civilians, he continued, expressing his condolences to the victims’ families. The Transitional Federal Government and AMISOM had expanded the line of control in Mogadishu, while new fronts had opened up in southern Somalia, he added. Coupled with other efforts, those measures would allow the United Nations to expand its presence in Somalia, he said. By reinforcing military gains, providing humanitarian relief and achieving political progress, “we can set Somalia on course for greater stability and peace”, he continued, noting that failure risked a growing humanitarian crisis, a deteriorating security situation and a worsening threat to regional peace and security.
Somalia’s Prime Minister Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed described the partnership between the Transitional Federal Government and AMISOM as “the first line of defence against two evils — the scourge of piracy and the plague of terrorism”. Defeating them required cooperation and collaboration with the international community, he said, listing five priorities: improved security; enhanced reconciliation; completion of the transitional tasks; addressing humanitarian crises; and promoting good governance.
He said that in the past 100 days, his new Government had been changing the political landscape, notably in the area of good governance, by promoting accountability and transparency in financial management. It should be given ample time to ratify the constitution and establish an Electoral Commission, he said, adding that it should soon appoint a caretaker Government to move the country towards permanent statehood. “We will regain our land, our identity and our dignity from the extremists,” he declared. “We will not compromise the interests of our nation or the future of our children.”
Boubacar Diarra, the African Union’s Special Representative for Somalia, said the political and security pillars of the regional body’s strategy aimed to improve the security environment in and around Mogadishu, the capital; to create an environment conducive to increased political engagement between the Transitional Federal Government and Somali groups outside the peace process; and to foster a suitable environment for the delivery of humanitarian assistance and public services in Mogadishu. With that in mind, he requested the Council to continue to support the Transitional Federal Institutions and Government security forces, also calling for an enhanced support package for AMISOM.
In the ensuing open debate, country representatives agreed that the political situation in Somalia had reached a “critical juncture”, citing various tasks to be completed before the 20 August end of the transitional arrangement, and the ongoing need to advance the reconciliation process within the framework of the 2008 Djibouti Peace Process, whose collapse, many said, was not an option. Others said that durable peace required resolute action against armed groups, especially Al-Shabaab, and other “spoilers” inside and outside Somalia that continued to undermine the peace process. Piracy was an entrenched problem, to be tackled in a manner that considered the needs of the economically marginalized.
Furthermore, delegates said, thousands of Somali refugees had fled to neighbouring countries, increasing the competition for scarce resources between refugees and local communities, and worsening the humanitarian situation in host nations. For neighbouring Kenya — sharing a long, porous border with Somalia and housing more than 1 million refugees in camps — the call for collaboration in dealing with extremists, and for agreements to change AMISOM’s peacekeeping mandate into a peace enforcement one to ensure that it reclaimed areas under Al-Shabaab’s control, was most urgent, that country’s representative said.
Uganda’s representative said resolute action was needed against armed groups, especially Al-Shabaab, which committed terrorist and other attacks against the Transitional Federal Government, AMISOM, civilians and humanitarian workers. There was also a need for action against spoilers inside and outside Somalia who continued to undermine the peace process, he said. The country also needed sustained financial, material and technical support to deliver basic services, reconstruction, and to set up basic economic infrastructure.
The Minister for Africa of the United Kingdom also addressed the Council.
Others speaking today were representatives of Gabon, Germany, France, Russian Federation, United States, South Africa, India, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Lebanon, Nigeria, Portugal, Colombia, China, Turkey, Ethiopia, Italy, Indonesia, Japan, Egypt, Denmark, Sudan, Sweden, Philippines, Spain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Norway, Thailand, United Republic of Tanzania, Ukraine, Tajikistan (on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference), Eritrea and the Republic of Korea.
Also delivering a statement was the Acting Head of the European Union Delegation to the United Nations.
Augustine P. Mahiga, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of United Nations Political Office in Somalia (UNPOS), followed the proceedings via video link.
The meeting began at 10:12 a.m. and suspended at 1:05 p.m. Resuming at 3:08 p.m., it ended at 5:15 p.m.
The full text of Presidential Statement S/PRST/2011/6 reads as follows:
“The Security Council stresses the need for a comprehensive strategy to encourage the establishment of peace and stability in Somalia through the collaborative efforts of all stakeholders in the fields of political process, security sector building, humanitarian relief, protection of civilians, human rights, socio-economic development, counter-terrorism and combating piracy. The Council reiterates its grave concern at the continued instability in Somalia which has led to a multitude of problems, including terrorism, acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea off the coast of Somalia and a dire humanitarian situation.
“The Security Council reaffirms its support for the Djibouti Agreement as the basis for the resolution of the conflict in Somalia. It urges the Transitional Federal Institutions to broaden and consolidate the reconciliation process, intensify efforts to complete the outstanding transitional tasks and prioritize the timely completion of the constitution and the delivery of basic services to the population, paving the ground for a better future for Somalis, including their economic and social development and the realization of their human rights.
“The Security Council welcomes the work of Mr. Augustine P. Mahiga, Special Representative of the Secretary-General, to support the Somali people in reaching agreement on post-transitional arrangements in consultation with the international community. It strongly urges the Transitional Federal Institutions to engage in this process in a more constructive, open and transparent manner that promotes broader political dialogue and participation in line with the spirit of the Djibouti Agreement. The Council requests the Secretary-General to assess, in his regular reports delivered to the Council before the end of the transitional period, the respect for these principles. These principles are essential for future cooperation between the international community and the Transitional Federal Institutions. The Security Council notes that the transitional period will end in August 2011. The Council regrets the decision by the Transitional Federal Parliament to extend its mandate unilaterally and without carrying out necessary reforms and urges the Transitional Federal Institutions to refrain from any further unilateral action.
“The Security Council expresses its strong support for the work of SRSG Mahiga, welcomes his efforts and those of the UN, and calls for an increased UN presence and increased coherence of UN activities in Somalia.
“The Security Council affirms the importance of the development of government institutions and the strengthening of civilian capacity-building across Somalia, including ensuring the participation of women in public life, the prevention and resolution of conflict, peacebuilding and socio-economic reconstruction. The Council urges the international community to mobilize additional support to the TFG, local and regional administrations in this regard.
“The Security Council expresses its serious concern about the worsening humanitarian situation in Somalia, and the impact of the current drought, which have left over 2 million Somalis in urgent need of humanitarian assistance and have resulted in significantly higher flows of refugees to neighbouring countries. The Security Council also expressed concern at the continuing decline in humanitarian funding for Somalia. The Security Council commends the work of humanitarian aid workers and urges all Member States to contribute to current and future consolidated humanitarian appeals.
“The Security Council strongly condemns the targeting and obstruction of the delivery of humanitarian aid by Al-Shabaab and other armed groups in Somalia and demands that all parties ensure full, safe and unhindered access for the timely delivery of humanitarian aid.
“The Security Council emphasizes the importance of strengthening the Somali Security forces including the development of effective command and control. While emphasizing the Somalis hold the primary responsibility for achieving political stability, security and the rule of law, the Council urges Member States and regional and international organizations to contribute generously and promptly to the United Nations Trust Fund for the Somali security institutions, and to provide assistance to the Somali security forces.
“The Security Council recognizes the progress made by AMISOM and Somali National Security Forces in consolidating security and stability in Mogadishu. The Council deeply regrets the loss of life in the recent fighting and recognizes the significant sacrifices made by AMISOM and Somali National Security Forces. The Council expresses its sincere gratitude to the Governments of Burundi and Uganda for their commitment to AMISOM, and expresses its condolences to them and to the TFG and the Somali people.
“The Security Council condemns all attacks, including terrorist attacks on the Transitional Federal Government, AMISOM, and the civilian population by armed opposition groups, and foreign fighters, particularly Al Shabaab.
“The Security Council stresses the importance of predictable, reliable and timely resources for AMISOM in order for it to better fulfil its mandate. The Security Council calls on the international community to make contributions urgently and without caveats to the UN Trust Fund for AMISOM or directly in support of AMISOM. It notes the recommendations on Somalia of the Africa Union Peace and Security Council of 15 October 2010 and underlines its intention to keep the situation under review. It encourages the full deployment of 4000 additional AMISOM troops as authorized by the Security Council resolution 1964 (2010) as soon as possible.
“The Security Council stresses the responsibility of all parties and armed groups in Somalia to comply with their obligations to protect the civilian population from the effects of hostilities, in particular by avoiding any indiscriminate or excessive use of force. The Security Council expresses deep concern about the continuing violations and abuses committed against children in Somalia by parties to the conflict and urges the immediate implementation of all conclusions of the Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict in Somalia.
“The Security Council remains gravely concerned about the threat posed by piracy and armed robbery off the coast of Somalia, especially by the extended range of the piracy threat into the western Indian Ocean, the increase in pirate capacities and the increasing violence by the pirates. The Security Council condemns in the strongest terms such violence, including hostage taking, murder and other acts of violence against individuals. The Security Council recognizes that the ongoing instability in Somalia contributes to the problem of piracy and armed robbery and stresses the need for a comprehensive response to tackle piracy and its underlying causes.
“The Security Council calls upon all Member States, in particular those in the region, to refrain from any action in contravention of the Somalia and Eritrea arms embargo and to take all necessary steps to hold violators accountable, and affirms the importance of enhancing the monitoring of the Somalia and Eritrea arms embargoes through persistent and vigilant investigation into the violations, bearing in mind that strict enforcement of the arms embargoes will improve the overall security situation in the region.
“The Security Council welcomes the endeavours of the African Union (AU), Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and other regional organizations to promote peace and stability in Somalia and reiterates its full support to AMISOM and its troop- and police-contributing countries, especially Burundi and Uganda.”
For today’s open debate on a “Comprehensive strategy for the realization of peace and security in Somalia”, the Security Council had before it a concept paper (document S/2011/114) issued by the Permanent Mission of China, which holds the presidency this month.
According to the paper, a comprehensive strategy is urgently needed to resolve the Somali issue due to the complexity and inter-connections of the continuing instability and terrorism, the deteriorating humanitarian situation and growing instances of piracy. With the approaching end, in August, of the transition period established by the Djibouti Peace Process — under which the Transitional Federal Government and the Transitional Federal Institutions were also created — Somalia and relevant stakeholders are increasingly concerned about the completion of outstanding transitional tasks, particularly the drafting of a constitution. The recent decision by the Transitional Federal Parliament to extend its term for another three years has been controversial.
The paper emphasizes that, although the forces of the Transitional Federal Government, supported by the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), have recently made some territorial gains in Mogadishu, the security situation in southern and central Somalia remains fragile. And despite international efforts to fight piracy off the Somali coast, the problem has worsened. There were 219 attacks in 2010, and pirates are currently holding more than 20 ships captive, in addition to some 700 sailors. The African Union urges the Council to approach the issue in a holistic and effective manner, with a view to addressing its underlying causes.
Noting that the civil strife of some 20 years has caused enormous suffering, leaving an estimated 2.4 million Somalis in need of assistance, the paper says the situation is exacerbated by the ongoing drought. An inclusive dialogue among all Somalis and key stakeholders will help map the way forward, it states. The Security Council’s endorsement of reinforcing AMISOM by 4,000 troops to the level of 12,000 in Mogadishu should help the Transitional Federal Government promote the inclusive political dialogue with other groups and expand the delivery of essential services to the people.
LI BAODONG ( China), Council President, said that thanks to joint efforts by Somalia, the international community and the United Nations in particular, progress had been made. However, many challenges remained and today’s open debate aimed to urge the international community to pay greater attention to the question of Somalia, as well as the broader questions of peace and security.
BAN KI-MOON, Secretary-General of the United Nations, launched the debate by reiterating that the situation in Somalia required urgent attention and that military gains by Government and AMISOM forces remained fragile. Violence continued to rage and, given the call for good governance and a decent life in North Africa, public expectations were growing. Acting now would allow the consolidation of recent gains and set a better course for the future, he said.
AMISOM troops from Burundi and Uganda had made the ultimate sacrifice in the cause of peace, as had numerous civilians, he said, expressing his condolences to the victims’ families. The Transitional Federal Government and AMISOM had expanded the line of control in Mogadishu, while new fronts had opened up in southern Somalia. Assistance must be provided to help sustain those gains in order to ensure that security was restored and humanitarian services delivered, he said, adding that such improvements — for Somalis, including the thousands internally displaced — were critical for sustaining hard-won military gains.
He emphasized that AMISOM would be more effective if it had more resources, including helicopters and support for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. There were critical gaps in the United Nations support package to the Mission, he pointed out, appealing to States to increase their contributions to the Trust Fund for AMISOM, which would enable it to reach its full strength. Power was as much about troop numbers as the assets supporting them, he pointed out.
Coupled with other efforts, those measures would allow the United Nations to expand its presence in Somalia, he continued. However, the Transitional Federal Institutions must also rise to challenges on the political and governance fronts. Indeed, political objectives must frame military objectives, he noted, adding that the Transitional Federal Institutions now had the chance to consolidate their authority. However, that window of opportunity might not last, and they must find a “unity of purpose”, which itself should be the driving force of negotiations on shaping Somalia’s future, he said.
He went on to emphasize that any extension of the transitional period must be earned, with the focus on fulfilling outstanding tasks, including the constitutional process, which would help Somalis choose their own fate and their own leaders. That process should be open and inclusive, he said, adding that his Special Representative had been working with clan and religious leaders to reach consensus on those issues, as outlined in the Djibouti Agreement.
Describing piracy as a grave menace, he welcomed the improved sharing of information, as well as the deployment of significant military and other assets. Nonetheless, the pirates were extending their geographic reach, he pointed out, adding that a recent report by his Special Adviser on Piracy highlighted the need for urgent action and called for an integrated, three-pillared response: deterrence; development; and security. Meanwhile, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) had revised the Kampala process, a mechanism for dialogue, he said, expressing hope that the forum would continue to meet throughout the year.
Expressing concern about the drought, which had displaced some 50,000 people, many to urban areas, he said food had not been distributed in some areas and hostilities were forcing people from their homes. Citing data from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), he said 2,500 Somalis registered in refugee camps across the border in Kenya each week. Before the fighting and drought, their number had been less than 400, he noted.
He went on to say that this year’s humanitarian appeal for Somalia sought $529 million, but only a quarter of that amount had been received as of last month. The Emergency Relief Coordinator had allocated $15 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), with an additional $50 million from pooled funding for responding to the drought. Without long rains, the situation would worsen, he warned, cautioning that inadequate funding was not the only obstacle. “We also lack access to areas of conflict and insecurity where needs are greatest,” he said. “ Somalia urgently needs our help.”
AMISOM needed more support, he reiterated, adding that, by providing humanitarian relief and making political progress, “we can set Somalia on a course for greater stability and peace”. Failure risked a growing humanitarian crisis, a worsening security situation and regional instability, he warned. Welcoming the Council’s decision to authorize more troops for AMISOM, he said both the Mission and the Transitional Federal Government needed more in the way of actual troops, equipment and enhanced capacity. Somalis needed humanitarian assistance, political stability and a constitutional process that offered hope, he stressed. By thinking ahead, “we can establish the conditions in which Somalis can steer their country out of violence” and into a future free from want and fear.
MOHAMED ABDULLAHI MOHAMED, Prime Minister of Somalia, listed the Transitional Federal Government’s five priorities: improving security; enhancing reconciliation; completing the transitional tasks; addressing humanitarian crises; and promoting good governance. It was committed to defeating two common enemies —Al Shabaab and lawlessness such as piracy, he said, noting that Government and AMISOM forces were making tangible progress in reclaiming large territories in Mogadishu and throughout the country. Expressing confidence that most of southern Somalia would be brought under Government control, he said: “We are in the first line of defence against two evils — the scourge of piracy and the plague of terrorism.”
To defeat them, cooperation and collaboration with the international community would be necessary, he said, emphasizing also the need for moral fortitude and strong political will. The root cause and breeding ground of terrorism and piracy was “lawlessness coupled with poverty and unemployment, and soaked with fanaticism and religious indoctrination”. The scourge of piracy could not be defeated on the high seas, he stressed, adding that the solution was to restore the rule of law in Somalia and to help coastal communities develop alternative livelihoods. It would not be surprising if Al-Qaida’s agents in Somalia started hijacking tankers on the high seas and using them as deadly weapons, he warned.
He said that, during the past 100 days, his new Government of able technocrats had been changing the political landscape. It was fully engaged in implementing good governance, including by promoting accountability and transparency in financial management, establishing an anti-corruption taskforce, delivering services, providing security, developing a constitution, working for reconciliation, and ensuring access for humanitarian assistance. “We are winning the hearts and the minds of the Somali population,” he said, citing a recent study that showed 75 per cent of people in Mogadishu indicating “strong displeasure” with Al-Shabaab. About 70 per cent recognized that the Transitional Federal Government was making a great effort in reaching out to the regions and opposition groups, and some 75 per cent rated AMISOM as friends of the Somali people, he said.
Noting that the transitional period would end on 20 August, he said the Executive Branch had approved: the formal closure of the Transitional Federal Government’s term; the election of the Speaker and Deputies in July; and the election of the President in August. The new Government should be given ample time to fulfil the remaining transitional tasks, including ratification of the constitution and the establishment of the Election Commission, he said. Parliamentary reform should commence immediately, and the new leadership must appoint a caretaker Government to move the country towards permanent statehood.
Regarding security, the Prime Minister underlined the urgent needs to deploy the additional 4,000 African Union troops, adding that an equally important priority was to establish a credible and effective disarmament, demobilization and reintegration programme. “We will regain our land, our identity and our dignity from the extremists,” he said. “We will not compromise the interests of our nation or the future of our children,” he added, declaring in conclusion: “We will do what it takes to regain our status as a State that protects its borders from enemies, foreign and domestic, ends all forms of international piracy, protects its citizens, and produces a nation at peace with itself, and its neighbours.”
BOUBACAR DIARRA, Special Representative for Somalia of the African Union, said that, despite some positive results, the situation in that country remained challenging, especially on the political front, which would see the current transition arrangement end on 20 August. Indeed, with transitional tasks like the adoption of a draft constitution outstanding, the political situation was at a critical juncture. Recalling that, in January, the African Union Assembly had endorsed the decision by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) to extend the Transitional Federal Parliament’s term, he said that, in line with that decision, the latter had passed a resolution on 3 February, extending its term by a further three years.
On the military front, he said recent weeks had seen Transitional Federal Government and AMISOM troops significantly “change the picture” on the ground in Mogadishu, noting that they had taken control of key positions in the north-west of the capital, including the former Ministry of Defence building, which had been Al-Shabaab’s main logistical and operations base. “These gains are the latest in a steady advance our forces have been making since the summer of last year,” he said. However, the dire humanitarian situation had been compounded by famine resulting from drought, he said. Meanwhile, Al-Shabaab continued to target Transitional Federal Government and AMISOM forces with mortars and improvised explosive devices, as well as suicide attacks, and using civilians as human shields. It had hampered the flow of humanitarian aid to needy populations, who were hostages to “extremist ideology”, he said.
Offering thoughts for the Council’s consideration, he said the political pillar of the African Union strategy hinged on the need for AMISOM to support the Transitional Federal Institutions, which needed help in facilitating the end of transitional arrangements, paving the way for a new dispensation in August. The security pillar of that strategy was a means to achieving that political goal, he said. The political and security pillars would enable the African Union to achieve three broad political and military objectives: improving the security environment in and around Mogadishu; creating an environment conducive to increased political engagement between the Transitional Federal Government and Somali groups outside the peace process; and fostering a suitable environment for the delivery of humanitarian assistance and public services in Mogadishu.
With that in mind, he requested the Council to continue to support the Transitional Federal Institutions and Government security forces, and to enhance the support package for AMISOM, with funding through assessed contributions. The Council must also authorize naval operations off the coast of Somalia to provide more direct and tangible support to AMISOM, notably for maritime deterrence and air surveillance operations. It was also important to ensure the effective implementation of sanctions against all those impeding the peace and reconciliation process, he said, adding that the issue of piracy should be approached in a holistic manner, with a view to addressing the underlying causes.
HENRY BELLINGHAM, Minister for Africa of the United Kingdom, said the conflict in Somalia threatened the wider region and beyond through piracy and terrorism. Commending the professionalism and dedication of AMISOM, he said the Mission needed the support of the international community as its recent gains were fragile. The Mission was not only about defeating insurgents, but also protecting civilians, he said, adding that more was needed to enable it to make further gains. The United Kingdom would contribute an “uncaveated” $3 million to the AMISOM Trust Fund, he said, calling on others to make similar contributions.
He said that, since a military solution was not possible, an inclusive political process was needed. The United Kingdom, therefore, encouraged the United Nations and the African Union to work together in developing a coordinated political and military strategy. After the end of the transitional period in August, a political vacuum should not be allowed, he emphasized, saying it was “troubling” that political infighting within the Transitional Federal Government had a higher priority than reconciliation. There should be no extension of the transitional period without reforms, he said, adding that broad consultations on follow-up arrangements were necessary and stressing the need to build on improvements.
The dire humanitarian situation, including drought, underlined the need for concerted action, he said, noting that 2011 marked 20 years since the collapse of the Somali State. The situation was desperate for many Somalis, a generation of whom had grown up without peace or school. However, there were encouraging signs, he said, noting that Somalis were working together at the local level. The country was literally at a crossroads, he said, predicting that the future could be bright if recent progress was maintained. If not, the alternative scenario would be grim, he warned.
NOEL NELSON MESSONE ( Gabon) said that after August, a comprehensive strategy involving political and security aspects would be able to bring about an effective solution. The Transitional Federal Government needed to expand its political base and make the constitutional process its priority. The reconciliation process needed to take further root and, overall, the Government’s actions should be more effective, he said. There was an urgent need to complete transitional tasks and to make a priority of strengthening cohesion within the Transitional Federal Institutions. Parliament’s unilateral decision to extend its mandate beyond August contradicted that notion, he stressed.
He said that with AMISOM still facing many challenges, the international community should put an end to illicit financing for insurgents and the supply of arms, while implementing targeted sanctions. The deployment of 4,000 additional troops was urgently needed, for which the financing of AMISOM was of key importance. Owing to the lack of predictable financing, the Mission could not meet its mandate, he noted, calling on donor countries to increase their contributions to the Trust Fund for AMISOM. In light of the worsening humanitarian situation, he urged a greater mobilization of resources to provide the necessary assistance. The Council must ensure that the parties were in compliance with their obligation to protect civilians not to recruit minors and to ensure access for humanitarian assistance. Piracy should be addressed in tandem with security threats on land, he said in conclusion.
PETER WITTIG ( Germany), noting that the conflict in Somalia had lasted “far too long”, said it had attracted international terrorist activity and provided a breeding ground for piracy. Above all, it had imposed an unacceptable human cost, especially on vulnerable groups such as refugees, women and children. Concerned about the severely limited humanitarian space, Germany called upon all parties in the country to ensure unhindered access for humanitarian aid, as well as safety for all humanitarian staff, he said. It also called for the immediate implementation in Somalia of the conclusions of the Council’s Working Group on Children in Armed Conflict.
Five months before the end of the transition period, there was an urgent need to promote a clear political strategy for mastering the remaining transitional tasks, he said, reiterating his delegation’s full support for the Djibouti Peace Process. The Transitional Federal Government must now focus on completing the constitution-making process and outreach to armed opposition groups through dialogue and by providing security and basic services to the Somali people. Additionally, the Transitional Federal Institutions must stop their political infighting, he stressed. For its part, the international community should urge better cooperation among the parties and engage with the local administrations, communities and civil society, he said, adding that piracy originating from Somalia should be tackled in a “comprehensive way”. Finally, he reiterated his country’s full support for AMISOM, pointing out that Germany had provided it with substantial aid exceeding $5 million.
GÉRARD ARAUD (France), welcoming efforts by the Transitional Government, AMISOM and other allies in their offensive against Al-Shabaab, said the forces from Burundi and Uganda had shown particular courage, adding that France, for its part, had transported and cared for wounded AMISOM soldiers. But a military solution must serve a broader political strategy, he emphasized, noting that there had been insufficient progress on that front. The Transitional Federal Institutions had fed “sterile institutional rivalries”, and had not been able to provide Somalis with the minimum services needed. A new political strategy was needed, with priority placed on a renewed institutional framework.
The Transitional Federal Institutions must be reformed to better represent all stakeholders, in line with the Djibouti accords, he said, expressing regret over the legislature’s decision to extend its own mandate. Dialogue with regions such as “Puntland” and opposition groups must be taken up again, and the provision of basic services was also essential. Moreover, United Nations agencies and programmes must urgently deploy services. A political focus was needed to solidify the links between the Transitional Federal Institutions and the international community, he said, calling for a road map in that regard. On piracy, he welcomed plans by the Russian Federation to table a draft resolution placing Somalia at the centre of a mechanism aimed at fighting impunity.
VITALY CHURKIN ( Russian Federation) said the complex military, political and humanitarian situation in Somalia underscored the urgent need for an international settlement, with the lead role played by Somali governance institutions. A radical military and political breakthrough was needed, he said, adding that his delegation advocated raising AMISOM numbers to the levels outlined in resolution 1964 (2010). Strengthening the military contingent of AMISOM and the Transitional Federal Government forces must be aimed at protecting civilians and dismantling Al-Shabaab as a destructive force. In that regard, there must be an end to outside channels of support to the Somali opposition, he said, adding that sanctions, including targeted sanctions, should be imposed, on the basis of objective and vetted information.
He went on to say that the success of any peace settlement would depend on the Somali people themselves, stressing the need for contacts with “constructive” opposition elements. The Russian Federation supported a phased expansion of the United Nations presence, as well as measures to improve coordination. It was also important to take into account the security conditions, the difficult humanitarian situation and the low financing for assistance programmes. Piracy was worsening and counter-measures had failed to keep up with developments, he said, calling on the Council to take steps. The Russian Government would submit a draft resolution aimed at finding a solution to the problem, including by fighting impunity, he said, adding that his country would work with the Somali leadership and other partners in continuing to help create peace, in line with the Djibouti agreements.
DAVID DUNN ( United States) said AMISOM peacekeepers and national security forces had shown professionalism and courage during the current offensive, but the international community must do more to support the Mission in terms of troops and equipment, among others. The Somali population faced a dire humanitarian situation, he said, expressing grave concern about the needs of the more than 2 million Somalis living in areas controlled by Al-Shabaab. The threat posed by radicals, together with a lack of economic opportunities, fuelled the menace of piracy, he said, adding that last month’s killing of four Americans underlined the escalating level of violence. The Council must “go after” those financing organized piracy, he stressed, adding that incarceration capacity should also be considered in efforts to secure the prosecution of pirates.
Emphasizing that the obstacles to a stable Somalia could not be underestimated, he said his country continued to support the Djibouti Peace Process and the Transitional Federal Government, even as it supported groups that sought peace and rejected terrorism. Expressing concern over the lack of reform within the Transitional Federal Government and the lack of services to the people, he said the Government must make progress in completing transitional tasks and improve its financial institutions and procedures. The United States did not support the Transitional Federal Parliament’s unilateral three-year extension, and rejected any extension in the absence of a clear road map, he emphasized.
BASO SANGQU ( South Africa) said that, with the end of the transition period looming, it was critical that the Transitional Federal Government, with the assistance of the international community, redouble its efforts to complete the remaining transitional tasks. That would require, among other things, unity of purpose among the Somali political leadership. National ownership of a future dispensation remained critical to ensuring sustainability, he said, adding that Somaliland”, “Puntland” and other regional entities also had an important role to play in the solution. The Transitional Federal Government’s success would ultimately depend on its ability to provide security and deliver peace dividends, he said. Expressing concern about the deteriorating humanitarian situation, he encouraged the international community to contribute to the 2011 Humanitarian Appeal.
He said AMISOM should be strengthened and supported to a level commensurate with the challenges it faced on the ground. That support should include funding through assessed contributions for the payment of troop allowances and reimbursement for contingency-owned equipment, as well as the provision of air capabilities and enablers to enhance the effectiveness of AMISOM. South Africa supported ongoing efforts to address the challenge of piracy, he said, adding that tackling the scourge would require a holistic approach that promoted economic opportunities, and addressed its underlying causes, as well as its political and security dimensions. Investigations into illegal fishing and allegations of toxic waste dumping should help reverse the growing trend of piracy.
HARDEEP SINGH PURI ( India) said international efforts to re-establish security in Somalia would not succeed so long as Al-Shabaab continued to generate internal resources for its activities. The Transitional Federal Government should, therefore, establish control of Kismayo to prevent the misappropriation of port earnings. In addition, serious efforts should be undertaken by all stakeholders to cut off arms supplies to Al-Shabaab. Describing piracy as one of the unfortunate outcomes of the ongoing tragedy in Somalia, he said the shift in attacks to the southern and eastern Indian Ocean reflected the pirates’ ability to adapt in order to bypass the established security corridor. Reporting that the Indian Navy and Coast Guard had recently neutralized two “mother ships”, he said that, although the Council had not addressed the matter of the sailors taken hostage, it deserved the most urgent and serious consideration by the United Nations. While ship owners bore the primary responsibility for the release of hostages, they often did not take responsibility or display adequate interest, he noted.
IVAN BARBALIĆ (Bosnia and Herzegovina), associating himself with the statement to be delivered by the European Union delegation, said the Djibouti peace process was the only option for long-term stability, and urged all parties to join it in the interest of the Somali people. Calling on all stakeholders to unite in doing their utmost to implement their commitments and successfully complete the transitional period, he urged the Transitional Federal Institutions to refrain from unilateral actions and redouble their efforts for national reconciliation, completion of a constitution and expansion of political space through inclusive dialogue. State institutions must be strengthened to ensure basic services for Somalis, and the international community must provide the Transitional Federal Institutions with support, including training.
Expressing deep concern over the security situation, he condemned attacks on civilians and other human rights violations, especially against women and children. One reason for the recruitment of youth into piracy had to do with a lack of financial security, which should be a priority, he noted. The Transitional Federal Government must do its utmost to end the “culture of impunity” and establish the rule of law. He also urged international support to help AMISOM reach its mandated strength, and expressed deep concern over the worsening humanitarian situation, saying that the obstruction of assistance required international attention. Counter-piracy measures were also needed to prevent regional spill-over effects, he stressed, adding that the focus should be on eliminating its root causes and welcoming the Secretary-General’s proposal for prosecuting those responsible.
MARIA LUIZA RIBEIRO VIOTTI (Brazil) said the time had come to review the international community’s collective approach and to design a strategy that took into account the multiple dimensions of the situation into account — internal strife, a deteriorating humanitarian situation, terrorism, piracy and organized crime, fragile institutions, and failing livelihoods. Such a strategy would need to combine efforts to generate security and stability, promote political reconciliation and support reconstruction, economic revitalization and capacity-building. Early planning for post-conflict development could help prevent setbacks to security and stability, she said, noting that Al-Shabaab had been gaining ground in central and southern Somalia. The deployment of an additional 4,000 troops to AMISOM should be implemented as swiftly as possible, with strengthened United Nations support.
She said there was also a need to step up humanitarian funding and to create conditions for secure aid delivery. The Council must further react to the increasing scourge of piracy in a timely manner, she said, adding that a comprehensive strategy was required to combine repressive and punitive measures with preventive ones. The Transitional Federal Government’s efforts on stability and institution-building should be supported. Noting the unilateral decision by the Transitional Federal Parliament to extend its mandate, she said an inclusive dialogue among all Somalis and key stakeholders would pave the way for progress towards stability. A strategy for the post-transitional period would require a solid and all-encompassing political settlement, enshrined in a new constitution, and an unequivocal improvement of the security situation, she said.
NAWAF SALAM ( Lebanon) noted that, in a country where one third of the population required assistance, focusing exclusively on a military solution would not lead to sustainable results. “ Somalia needs an inclusive strategic solution”, focused on Somali institutions and economic development. Urging renewed support for the Djibouti agreements, he welcomed the Government’s elaboration of a political road map, expressing hope that it would carry out the remaining transitional tacks, reach out to opposition groups through dialogue and complete the constitution, with participation by all parties. He expressed regret that the Transitional Federal Parliament had extended its mandate.
Emphasizing the need for all parties to ensure that civilians were protected, he expressed concern at the fragile security situation in southern and central Somalia, saying that piracy and armed burglary also threatened international commercial navigation and impeded the delivery of humanitarian assistance. The underlying causes of piracy must be urgently addressed, he added. He also expressed deep concern at the recruitment of children into armed groups and threats to humanitarian workers, stressing that humanitarian workers must be able to provide assistance to all requiring it, including those under military control. He called on the Council to enhance support for AMISOM, calling for an acceleration of the United Nations presence, and for the Council to send a “message of support” for the Djibouti peace process.
KIO AMIEYEOFORI ( Nigeria) said that full implementation of the remaining transitional tasks — delivering a new constitution and achieving reconciliation among them — would prepare the ground for a peaceful post-transition period. The appointment of a new Cabinet was a positive step and the Government should now be more responsive to the people’s needs. It must prioritize broader reconciliation and be willing to work with local institutions. Furthermore, it should enhance its relationship with “Puntland” and “Somaliland” while doing its utmost to maintain a relationship with the Ahlu Sunna Wal Jamaa, he said, noting that insecurity in southern Somalia, and the relationship between Al-Shabaab and Hizbul Islam was a concern.
While progress had been made with the deployment of 4,000 troops, in line with resolution 1964 (2010), a 20,000-strong force was still needed, he said, calling for a timeline for that deployment. Furthermore, the support package for AMISOM must be identical to that for United Nations peacekeeping operations. Calling for swift action to address piracy, as well as for judicial and correctional components to supplement anti-piracy efforts, he said there was a need for the relevant legislation, which would aid trans-border prosecution of maritime lawlessness. In closing, he said more attention must be paid to the views of the African Union on Somalia, including the African Union Peace and Security Council’s request for support to AMISOM.
JOSE FILIPE MORAES CABRAL ( Portugal) stressed the importance of capitalizing on the modest progress made in resolving the conflict in Somalia, and urged the Transitional Federal Institutions to refrain from unilateral action. It was crucial to improve institutional performance and achieve political stability, he said, urging the Transitional Federal Government to undertake concrete measures towards transition, particularly a timely conclusion to the constitution-making process and the delivery of basic services. Failure to proceed on those issues would have a negative impact on the fundamentals for more international support, he cautioned. He stressed the importance of strengthening the building of civilian capacity and engaging Somali women in decision-making, politics, peacebuilding, socio-economic reconstruction and public life in general.
He condemned in the strongest terms all attacks on the Transitional Federal Government, AMISOM and the civilian population, expressing particular concern about the situation of women and children, the main victims of instability. He urged parties to the conflict to comply with international humanitarian and human rights law, and to ensure that humanitarian workers had full and unhindered access to all populations in need. Echoing the concerns of other Council members over the threat of piracy and the increasing violence perpetrated by pirates, he strongly condemned both. Portugal had participated in operations of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), he said, pointing out that his country would assume command of the European Union’s Atalanta mission in May.
NÉSTOR OSORIO ( Colombia) said the recent intensification of the conflict had deepened the alarming humanitarian situation, exacerbated in turn by the drought. It was necessary to ensure that all parties to the conflict respected humanitarian principles and facilitated access for assistance. Colombia supported targeted measures against identified leaders of armed groups that hindered humanitarian aid, he added. Noting that piracy had become one of the country’s most lucrative activities, he said it one of the consequences of institutional weakness and poor economic conditions. Armed groups such as Al-Shabaab had benefited increasingly from piracy-generated profits, he said, noting that, while international cooperation in preventing attacks and arresting pirates had yielded some positive results, the solution to the problem must come from Somalia, the main source, but also the victim of that terrible crime.
A comprehensive approach to the situation should include strengthening the rule of law and creating institutions to ensure good governance, he said, expressing concern over the continuing flow of weapons into the country, the absence of an effective central authority and a serious humanitarian crisis. While it was important that the Transitional Federal Government adopt reforms to facilitate the prosecution and imprisonment of pirates, it was essential, above all, to provide young Somalis with alternatives to piracy, he emphasized. There was a need to develop economic activities entailing unskilled labour and to ensure that society perceived piracy as an activity that reduced development options. In view of the approaching end of the transitional period, the United Nations must lead an early and decisive international response with stabilization and strengthening the State as its central goal.
Council President LI ( China), speaking in his national capacity, said the approaching end of the transitional period presented both challenges and opportunities. The problems facing Somalia were interconnected and required an integrated response, to be executed through a comprehensive strategy for peace, security and development that reflected national ownership. Such a strategy should include effective political reconciliation within the framework of the Djibouti Peace Process, as well as capacity-building in the security sector, he said.
Calling for the promotion of economic and social development as the key to winning the support of the Somali people, he called on the United Nations and the donor community to mobilize more resources to help Somalia realize that goal. Somalia should have a bigger say on questions such as the distribution of assistance. He also called for “deeper reflection” by the international community on its strategy for combating piracy, emphasizing that greater attention should be paid to addressing its root causes by political, economic and judicial means. Calling on the international community to provide more support to the African Union, he said the Council should consider establishing a United Nations peacekeeping operation in Somalia at an appropriate time.
Mr. Li then read out presidential statement S/PRST/2011/6.
ERTUĞRUL APAKAN ( Turkey) said that in order to provide AMISOM with adequate, predictable and sustainable funding, the Council should consider authorizing an enhanced support package that would be drawn from assessed contributions. Strengthening the Somali security institutions was also of crucial importance, he said, adding that military means should be accompanied by political steps. The Transitional Federal Institutions should double their efforts to reach out to and engage other groups in the Djibouti Peace Process, he said, calling also for the strengthening of relations with local authorities. Pending tasks, including the drafting of the new constitution, should be completed by the end of the transitional period in August. Turkey supported an extension of the transitional period as long as decisions to that effect were taken in a coordinated and consensual fashion, he said, emphasizing that unilateral action damaged the legitimacy and credibility of the Transitional Federal Institutions.
The root causes of instability could only be addressed through a comprehensive approach encompassing political, economic, and humanitarian and security issues, he said. Greater support for the Transitional Federal Government was required to help it build the capacity of its institutions and remedy structural deficiencies. The structures of allied local administrations should also require help. With the recent increase in hijackings and the escalation of violence shown by pirates, including the killing of innocent civilians, there was an urgent need for a strategic plan, he said. Root causes needed to be addressed, and there was also a need to build up the capacities of neighbouring countries with a view to fighting impunity and strengthening legal, judicial and penitentiary structures.
TEKEDA ALEMU ( Ethiopia), speaking on behalf of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development, said the situation in Somalia remained critical. Allowing the transition period to lapse and the Djibouti Peace Process to collapse could not be an option, he emphasized. Over the past few days, the Transitional Federal Government had shown progress in the security area, and that momentum must be maintained and expanded, both to raise the Government’s credibility and to convey the message that the extremists were “far from being the wave of the future”. It was important that the Government ensure the full implementation of the 15 March 2010 agreement with Ahlu-Sunna Wal Jamaa, particularly in the security area, and strengthen its cooperation with all those committed to the Djibouti Peace Process.
However, much more was expected from other entities, including the Security Council, he stressed. Its resolution 1964 (2010) only partially addressed the request by the African Union regarding the authorized strength of AMISOM, an enhanced support package for the Mission from assessed contribution, the imposition of a naval blockade and no-fly zone over Somalia, and effective implementation of sanctions on “spoilers”. He said his country was encouraged by the enhanced cooperation that it had managed to create between AMISOM and IGAD, as exemplified by a Memorandum of Understanding signed in April 2010, which had been developed into a joint regional strategy that might serve as a template for other regions in the future.
CESARE MARIA RAGAGLINI ( Italy) said Somalia needed stronger international efforts to ensure stabilization and security while preventing a spill-over from terrorism. The European Training Mission, in which Italy had taken part since its inception, was working well, he said, adding that, while the United States and Italy had renewed their financial support for 8,000 additional soldiers, that number was not enough. In light of the short time before the end of the transition, it would be crucial to address the need for a new post-August 2011 institutional set-up through concrete actions and a coordinated international approach. In encouraging enhanced cooperation among Somali entities, the international community must guarantee greater assistance to those stable regions that had not fallen under the control of Al-Shabaab, such as “Puntland”, “Galgaduud” and “ Somaliland”.
Turning to anti-piracy efforts, he said his country had been participating in the European Union‘s Atalanta operation and NATO’s “Ocean Shield” operation, and was keen to take command of the NATO fleet in the second half of 2011. Italy continued to prioritize the prosecution and detention of captured piracy suspects and supported the recommendation proposed by the Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on Legal Issues related to Piracy off the Coast of Somalia to create an extraterritorial Somali court with an international component. Italy also supported the call for increased efforts to control illicit financial flows to pirates, he said, adding that his country was willing to participate in a contact group on that matter, as well as to lead an effort to develop “actionable proposals” for disrupting piracy-related networks.
HASAN KLEIB ( Indonesia) said today’s meeting should be a building block to facilitate an end to conflict and Somalia’s return to normality. While social, political, economic and security issues must be addressed, that would require strong political will on the part of all stakeholders — both within and outside the country. Little headway had been made in that regard and the Council should reflect on whether its approach to Somalia overlooked key aspects of the peace process, he said. The constitution-drafting process should be inclusive, he added, saying it should reflect the cultural diversity of Somali society.
Expressing deep concern for the security of Somalis, he said the humanitarian crisis and drought had caused additional suffering, as had terrorist threats off the coast, which remained “very serious”. The internal conflict demanded strong local institutions, which would allow the Government to regain its “foothold” in the country. To address piracy, the deployment of troops and a naval armada would provide only a short-term solution he said, emphasizing that a comprehensive one must include ways to find alternative livelihoods for economically marginalized Somalis. Meanwhile, AMISOM must be provided with resources and equipment, he said, pressing the Council to “act with resoluteness” and expressing support for an incremental approach towards a future United Nations peacekeeping force.
TSUNEO NISHIDA ( Japan) expressed deep concern over the slow political progress in Somalia, particularly delays in the constitutional process and the recent declaration by the Puntland Government that is was suspending cooperation with the Transitional Federal Government. He urged the Transitional Federal Government to effectively address the remaining political tasks before the end of the transitional period, including drafting the Somali constitution and consulting with all political groups in Puntland and Somaliland, as well as with clans. The key problem in Somalia lay in the inter-relatedness of a number of critical issues and the international community should implement a comprehensive strategy that took all issues into account. His Government was firmly committed to contributing to such collective efforts. Its various actions in security, anti-piracy and humanitarian support were a testament to that determination. He supported enlarged coverage by forces of the Transitional Federal Government and AMISOM in areas under that Government’s control. Toward that end, Japan was contributing to capacity-building and deployment of the Somali police force. It had given $10 million to the United Nations SSI Trust Fund to train 500 police officers in Djibouti.
Japan recently authorized another $10 million to pay the salaries of trained police officers and build police facilities in Mogadishu, he said. He expected the Transitional Federal Government to make full use of its enhanced security and seize the current momentum for political dialogue. To combat piracy, Japanese vessels and patrol aircraft were involved in escort and surveillance activities. It was also giving capacity-building support, in cooperation with the International Maritime Organization (IMO), to coastal countries for maritime security. Building capacity, especially the correctional capacity of coastal nations and the region as a whole was urgently needed. Japan had given $500,000 to the Trust Fund to Support Initiatives of States Countering Piracy off the Coast of Somalia and it had recently authorized another $1 million for that purpose.
MACHARIA KAMAU ( Kenya) said Kenya shared a long, porous border with Somalia and more than 1 million Somalis lived in Kenya, half in refugee camps. Kenya had no other option but to strive to solve the conflict that had ravaged Somalia and heavily burdened Kenya’s own security, as well as social and economic development. Al-Shabaab was determined to recruit people from the Somali diaspora, which was rapidly growing in size, for overseas extremist activities. Thousands of refugees had fled Somalia to neighbouring countries, worsening the humanitarian situation in those countries and consuming their scarce resources. The Daadab Refugee Complex in Kenya, built to accommodate 90,000 refugees, was overcrowded and its services were strained. The refugee influx had led to environmental degradation and competition among refugees and local communities for scarce resources. Hardcore criminals and extremists had entered countries neighbouring Somalia under the guise of refugees. Their presence was a major cause for worry and no effort should be spared in dealing with those terrorists.
He called for urgent collaboration to deal with Islamic extremists and enemies of peace, as well as for agreements to change AMISOM’s mandate from peacekeeping to peace enforcement to ensure it reclaimed areas under Al-Shabaab’s control. United Nations peacekeepers should be deployed to Somalia to contain the situation before it got out of control. He supported the 31 January African Union Summit’s call for greater support to AMISOM and for the Council to increase funding from United Nations-assessed contributions to address the situation in Somalia. The Council must adopt a comprehensive strategy to create a functioning State in Somalia. That strategy must focus on enhancing support to AMISOM, supporting Somali security and other governance institutions, assisting socioeconomic development, creating job opportunities, particularly for youth, investing in infrastructure, giving people better access to basic services, and integrating Somalia into the East African Community.
MAGED ABDELAZIZ ( Egypt) said efforts to resolve the conflict and ensure a smooth transition must continue in the coming months in order to carry out pending tasks, particularly drafting the constitution. The Council and the international community must formulate a comprehensive strategy, based on respect for Somali unity and territorial integrity, to support the Transitional Federal Government’s efforts, building on what had already been achieved during the transitional period. Any decisions on post-transitional arrangements should reflect the consensus of the Somali parties and help enhance the reconciliation process, as well as efforts to achieve peace and stability. He called on the Somali parties to respond to the efforts of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in that regard.
International efforts to combat piracy had thus far focused just on the acts themselves, while neglecting to deal with their underlying causes, he continued. The international community should have a comprehensive approach to address piracy’s political, security, economic and humanitarian dimensions, particularly the absence of State authority, peace, stability and development for two decades. To achieve that goal, a number of important steps must be taken. The Transitional Federal Government should bolster efforts to expand the scope of the reconciliation process. Also, the international community should redouble efforts to support the Transitional Federal Government’s efforts to build institutional capacity, particularly in the security sector. Further, all parties must fulfil their commitments to AMISOM and what they pledged during the April 2009 Brussels Conference on support to the Somali security sector. They must continue to support AMISOM and enable it to reach its authorized strength of 12,000 troops in line with Council resolution 1964 (2010) and address AMISOM’s financial and logistical support gaps. He called for a donor conference to support development in areas where the security situation was improving, especially since financial support during the transitional period had not been significant.
PATRICK MUGOYA ( Uganda) said durable peace and stability in Somalia was attainable. More than ever, a comprehensive strategy was needed to address political, security, rule of law, and socioeconomic dimensions. He encouraged the Transitional Federal Government to bolster efforts to reach out to groups willing to cooperate in the spirit of reconciliation and inclusiveness, within the framework of the Djibouti Agreement. It was essential to bolster efforts to complete pending transitional tasks, and to complete the constitution-making process in a consultative, timely manner. He was encouraged by initiatives to build the Transitional Federal Government’s capacity, particularly in the security sector. But, more must be done to build on gradual, steady progress made by the Somali security forces, with the support of AMISOM, to consolidate security and stability in Mogadishu and beyond, in order to create the conditions necessary for the political process.
Resolute action was needed against armed groups, especially Al-Shabaab, which committed terrorist and other attacks against the Transitional Federal Government, AMISOM, civilians and humanitarian workers, as well as against spoilers in and outside Somalia that continued to undermine the peace process, he said. Somalia also needed sustained financial, material and technical support to deliver basic services, reconstruction, and to set up basic economic infrastructure. He called on the international community to redouble its efforts and support, including at the upcoming Kampala meeting of the International Contact Group on Somalia.
PEDRO SERRANO, Acting Head of the European Union Delegation to the United Nations, said he was deeply concerned by the violence and unrest in Somalia, and its dramatic impact on civilians, particularly women and children. He also expressed grave concern over the recruitment and use of children in the conflict. Noting that the recent short rainy season had caused greater food insecurity in central and southern regions and pushed the number of food-insecure people needing humanitarian assistance by 20 per cent to 2.4 million in the last six months, he said the European Union would continue to give humanitarian aid to the most vulnerable populations. Deeply concerned over the lack of access and respect for the integrity and independence of delivering humanitarian aid, he called on all actors to ensure free, unhindered access. The continued daily clashes between Al Shabaab and forces loyal to the Transitional Federal Government illustrated the urgent need to link security with a political strategy built on inclusive outreach. Security could not be guaranteed by military means alone.
Noting rising tensions in the contested regions between Puntland and Somaliland, he called on all parties to refrain from violence and use dialogue to resolve their differences. He was concerned over the continuous political instability, following the recent unilateral decision of the Somali parliament to extend its mandate for three years. To improve legitimacy, representation and credibility of any new institutional arrangements after August 2011, the Transitional Federal Institutions must be reformed. The constitutional process must be broadened. The European Union had developed a multi-pronged strategy in Somalia. Since 2007, the European Union had, through the African Peace Facility, given €142 million to AMISOM. In the framework of the European Union Training Mission (EUTM) launched last year, the European Union trained and supported 2,000 Somali soldiers. The first 1,000 soldiers had been deployed in Mogadishu to undergo reintegration training under the auspices of AMISOM.
The Union was substantially involved in the ongoing naval operations against piracy, he said. Although the escorting of SFP and AMISOM ships had been largely successful, the situation at sea was more and more challenging and the level of violence employed by pirates was constantly increasing. A multitude of comprehensive steps were urgently needed to tackle piracy, including tackling its root causes. He called for support to Somalia’s neighbours to build regional maritime capacity and for further developing the Kampala process. There was no purely military solution to the conflict in Somalia. Strengthening of AMISOM must go hand-in-hand with a comprehensive strategy of widening support for the Transitional Federal Government. He supported efforts to shorten the extension of the transition period. But any extension must be lined to reform. To conclude the transitional period and finalize the Constitution, the Transitional Federal Government should develop more effective governance and consensus-building before August 2011 and beyond. It should advance a reform agenda to ensure services were delivered to the Somali people and to build legitimacy and credibility.
CARSTEN STAUR ( Denmark) said that, ultimately, a lasting solution to the crisis in Somalia must be political. As a priority, the United Nations must assist the Transitional Federal Government in finalizing its political strategy needed to frame the military efforts and to engage Somali groups, including the private sector, religious leaders, civil society, women and the diaspora. He also urged the United Nations to ensure better coordination across its many and complex efforts in Somalia. Although the environment was risky, there might be possibilities for strengthening the United Nations presence in more stable areas such as Hargeisa or Garowe. International efforts must be underpinned by a process led by Africans themselves in the African Union, IGAD and other forums. A comprehensive solution must include Somalia’s neighbours and other countries in the Horn of Africa.
AMISOM was doing a commendable job, but a military track could not stand alone; a broad political solution, embracing a new constitution, was needed. He was, therefore, concerned at the lack of progress on the political track by the Transitional Federal Government. A further prolongation of the transitional period beyond the present year was not acceptable. He deplored the fact that opportunities to exploit divisions within Al-Shabaab and other armed groups had been lost. Further, the fight against piracy was a high priority for his country. It was clear, however, that efforts by naval forces could not stand alone. A lasting solution to the piracy problem could only be found on land. It must also be ensured that pirates were prosecuted. The establishment of prison facilities in Somalia was a key factor in that regard.
DAFA-ALLA OSMAN ( Sudan) said it was high time for the international community to show greater interest in Somalia and to tackle the developments through a different approach than the one adopted by the United Nations over two decades. Paying tribute to the efforts by the African Union and IGAD, including the efforts undertaken by AMISOM, he also welcomed efforts aimed at strengthening the implementation of the road map adopted by the Prime Minister of Somalia, stressing that the Sudan was an active member in the International Contact Group. A detailed vision and precise timeline must be devised for the implementation of outstanding issues to be resolved during the transitional period, he said, noting that it would be difficult to fulfil all remaining tasks during the transitional period ending in five months time.
He said that resolving the issue of piracy was not something to be achieved off the coast, but through the strengthening of state authority on land, as well as by promoting the rule of law throughout the country. Piracy could only be resolved through a lasting comprehensive political solution. The international community, and in particular the Council, must adopt a new approach to tackle the problem. Because of its historic relationship with Somalia, the Sudan would spare no efforts in restoring peace and stability in that country, as it had done in the past. Giving some examples of those efforts, he said that in 2006, Sudan had hosted three negotiation rounds between Somali factions. Efforts were being continued in the framework of the Arab contact Group for Somalia to bring the various factions closer together.
MÅRTEN GRUNDITZ ( Sweden) said that in the final phase of the transitional period, the Transitional Federal Institutions must demonstrate unity, determination and a capability to act. A realistic, implementable and prioritized plan of action was required, with clear benchmarks, accountability and adequate financial mechanisms. Development of the constitution required genuine popular consultations. He stressed that effective security structures of the Transitional Federal Government could not be established without a national security strategy and a defectors programme. As the role of AMISOM was indispensable, he was pleased to note that the Mission was improving enforcement of international humanitarian law, including by Transitional Federal Government troops.
He said the piracy problem needed a multi-pronged response, requiring joint initiatives and cooperation from among the entities in Somalia, including Somaliland. Some of the activities in the Kampala-process could prevent recruitment for piracy activities. A comprehensive approach to address the piracy problem through activities on land must be well informed of the livelihood patterns, income opportunities and dynamics on the ground. The fact that the United Nations Political Office in Somalia (UNPOS) was establishing a presence in Mogadishu, Puntland and Somaliland was welcome. An integrated strategic framework for the role of the United Nations throughout Somalia, including Somaliland, should be put in place and it should facilitate the harmonization of the overall international response.
LIBRAN N. CABACTULAN ( Philippines) said the deteriorating situation in Somalia posed serious security challenges that could develop into a much greater and long-term threat to international peace and security. The rampant piracy off the coast of Somalia was a major concern for the international community and the Philippines. Buoyed by their initial successes and impunity from prosecution, the pirates were getting more and more sophisticated and aggressive. Early this year, a Filipino seaman was shot dead. At least 130 Filipino seafarers were still being held captive. He paid tribute to their courage and tenacity and said his Government was doing everything within its power to obtain their early and safe release.
He said his country supported more robust international action against piracy. He commended the work of Jack Lang in developing legal approaches aimed at the prosecution and imprisonment of captured pirates. In addition, the international community must push bolder and more effective anti-piracy measures. The international naval presence, in particular Operation Atalanta, had done a lot to protect safe passage of merchant vessels, but the long-term solution to piracy must be found on land. Economic and career opportunities must be created in order to provide an alternative path to restless Somali youths who were vulnerable to the lure of piracy. The peace process in Somalia deserved the strong and vigorous support of the international community.
JUAN PABLO DE LAIGLESIA ( Spain) said Spain had committed €6 million to AMISOM. In 2010, Spain was the first country to donate humanitarian aid for Somalia. During last September’s meeting of the International Somalia Contact Group, Spain committed €3 million to the Transitional Federal Government, 2 million of which had already been allocated. As the transitional period would end in August, he said the Transitional Federal Government should make progress in drafting the new Constitution, promote an inclusive political dialogue to address the root causes of the conflict, focus on security-sector reform, and work actively to improve the lives of the Somali population. Spain’s commitment to fighting piracy was unwavering. Spain had assigned two vessels and two aircraft to the European Union Operation Atalanta. Spain supported NATO’s “Ocean Shield” operation and it would maintain its collaboration with the World Food Programme (WFP) to escort ships to Somalia. Spain commanded the EUTM mission in Uganda.
Piracy’s root causes must be addressed in a holistic manner, through reinforced legal, jurisdictional and correctional measures, he said. It was necessary to develop and strengthen institutional capacity-building in the legal, jurisdictional and correctional systems in countries in the region. Legal initiatives should take aim at the pirates, as well as those who planned, led and made a profit from piracy. That required improving the collection of evidence. A new Council resolution to address that was needed. It should encourage reinforcement in collecting and producing evidence; guarantee treatment in accordance with international humanitarian law for people detained, prosecuted and found guilty of piracy crimes; and make a decision to urgently establish Somali courts to hear piracy cases in Somaliland and Puntland and in neighbouring countries. Those courts could also be open to staff from third countries. Such a resolution would address current legal loopholes.
NASSIR ABDULAZIZ AL-NASSER ( Qatar) said his country had been keen on assuming the presidency of the Contact Group of the Organization of the Islamic Conference on Somalia, as well as the Chairmanship of Council’s Committee on Somalia in 2006, because of its eagerness to restore security and stability in Somalia. Qatar had good relations with the Transitional Federal Government, as it was aware that Somalia was still in dire need of steady international support to rebuild Somalia’s economy and institutions. He condemned all forms of violence and acts that threatened stability and the security of Somali citizens, the internationally recognized Government or international forces. Security was the most critical challenge facing the Transitional Federal Institutions. Therefore, greater support was needed for AMISOM. Somalia must be able to complete its current governance transition and build State institutions, achieve a degree of self-reliance and preserve national ownership.
Military action to deter pirates and protect merchant ships in the Indian Ocean was indispensable, he said. But it was also necessary to end impunity for pirates by supporting Somalia’s judicial system and building larger detention centres. He stressed the importance of respecting Somalia’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, political independence and national unity. The Somali Government should bolster efforts to create an environment conducive to national reconciliation among all parties in Somalia and to establishing the foundations for comprehensive, sustainable peace.
AHMED AL-JARMAN ( United Arab Emirates) stressed the need to develop a comprehensive international strategy and a clear political and developmental road map capable of helping the Somali people overcome their present predicament and restoring peace, security and stability. He called for strengthening international support for Somalia in several areas. That meant supporting the political process and addressing the country’s security situation by establishing political dialogue among all Somali parties and entities, including those outside the Djibouti peace process framework to encourage them to join the process and help end violence in the country, including acts of extremism and those targeting humanitarian workers.
Moreover, the international community must strengthen humanitarian, financial and economic support for the Transitional Federal Government in order to address the negative consequences of the drought in Somalia and to implement reform, rehabilitation and economic recovery programmes, as well as create legitimate sources of income as an alternative to piracy. The United Arab Emirates recently gave 149 tons of food to Somalia. He hoped other States would follow suit with similar aid. He called on the international community to develop a long-term holistic strategy to fight piracy and to bring pirates to justice. He supported the options and recommendations in the recent report of the Secretary-General and his Personal Envoy on that subject. He expressed hope that the April conference in Dubai on regional responses to combat piracy would help support and strengthen international anti-piracy efforts.
MORTEN WETLAND ( Norway) said that, as fighting had intensified, a severe drought was exacerbating an already grave humanitarian crisis in Somalia. There was, therefore, an urgent need to improve access for humanitarian assistance to all parts of the country. It was alarming that the Transitional Federal Institutions were lagging far behind in delivering on what was expected of them before August, he said, while deploring the untimely decision by the Transitional Federal Parliament to unilaterally extend its mandate for another three years. Urgent action was needed to lay the ground for a broader political platform and a more inclusive political process, including with the regional administrations. The Transitional Federal Institutions could not afford another internal power struggle.
He said the international community must act together in assisting Somalia to overcome the present hardships and achieve peace, security and stability. The absence of an effective international presence in Mogadishu and southern Somalia, however, prevented having a better understanding of the political and humanitarian situation on the ground. He, therefore, called for an increased international presence in the course of 2011. A lasting solution to the piracy problem could only be found on land and through the restoration of effective State institutions. In the meantime, the problem must be contained. It was vital that the pirates and their leaders and investors were brought to justice. To that end, more coordinated efforts in collecting, analysing and sharing intelligence on the financial flow related to piracy were needed.
KRIANGSAK KITTICHAIRSAREE ( Thailand), seriously concerned at Somali piracy, which had increased in scope, scale and frequency, said the problem was a symptom of various underlying factors that needed to be addressed holistically and concurrently. A long-term solution to the problem could only be achieved through the restoration of peace and security in Somalia. Sustained international and regional aid was necessary for the country to develop its economy and eradicate poverty. A medium-term solution might be achieved through the “Somaliazation” of responses, as proposed by Jack Lang. The international community should seriously consider his 25 proposals, including the possibility of establishing special courts with two special prisons for suspected pirates in Puntland and Somaliland.
He said the costs of piracy to its perpetrators must be raised to a point where piracy was no longer a relatively low-risk, high-profit enterprise. A short-term solution lay, therefore, in deterrence against acts of piracy through the repression and prosecution of pirates and those involved, including national and transnational organized groups, as well as arms embargoes, travel bans and a freeze of the assets of those engaged. He then described his country’s contributions to fighting the scourge, including through dispatching two naval vessels and two airlift helicopters to the Combined Maritime Forces.
OMBENI Y. SEFUE (United Republic of Tanzania) said the Transitional Federal Government had the primary responsibility to provide leadership for an all-inclusive political process for a post-conflict Somalia, as well as for building national institutions and capacity that could deliver for the Somali people. He hoped the Transitional Federal Institutions would remain united, determined and focused on driving the process forward. The implementation of the transitional tasks must be stepped up. He did not support the decision of the Parliament to unilaterally extend itself for another three years. Likewise, all the other parties to the peace and reconciliation process had to be forthcoming and contribute to a speedy and successful outcome. The Council must stand ready to impose sanctions on spoilers.
Concerned at the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation, he urged for increased support for humanitarian assistance and asked the Council to fully support AMISOM. The Council must support, endorse and authorize the specific requests by the Peace and Security Council of the African Union, which included expanding and increasing support to AMISOM; imposing a naval blockade and no-fly zone over Somalia; imposing sanctions against those impeding the peace and reconciliation process; addressing all underlying issues that drove protection; and a commitment to re-hat AMISOM as a United Nations peacekeeping operation. Somalia was not an African problem; it was a global problem within the full purview and mandate of the Security Council.
YURIY SERGEYEV ( Ukraine) said a more comprehensive, holistic approach to the situation was needed in light of Somalia’s worsening humanitarian crisis, growing violence and inability of transitional institutions to hold constructive dialogue with other stakeholders in the political reconciliation process. Despite the Transitional Federal Parliament’s recent unilateral decision to extend its mandate for three years, it was to be hoped that the Government would justify the trust placed in it as a credible transitional authority. However, he said he would favour shortening the transitional period and combining it with reform of transitional institutions and a continuation of the constitutional process.
He called upon all actors, including Member States and industry, to work more actively to resolve the problems facing seafarers and their families as a result of piracy. A long-term solution to address its root causes was still urgently needed, he said, stressing that, while repressing piracy at sea, the international community should more keenly explore ways to build regional naval and judicial capacities to enable Somalia to police its own waters and bring pirates to justice. He supported the proposal to create a system of Somali courts comprising specialized courts in “Puntland” and “ Somaliland”, as well as a specialized Somali court outside Somali territory. Ukraine also supported the proposal to set up prisons inside Somalia, noting that the lack of such facilities was a major constraint in prosecuting acts of piracy.
KHUSRAV NOZIRI (Tajikistan), speaking on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), said that, despite the strong engagement by the OIC and the wider international community that had produced the Djibouti process, lasting peace continued to elude Somalia. It was incumbent on all to continue working with the Government to protect their collective investment in the interest of regional and international peace and security, he said. The OIC Secretary-General had strongly appealed to member States to contribute troops to AMISOM, and it was to be hoped that, with the appointment of the new Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Transitional Federal Government would remain focused on pursuing national reconciliation and avoid any distraction in order to complete the outstanding transitional tasks through an inclusive process.
He said the international community should encourage the Government to promote dialogue and reconciliation with groups that renounced violence and joined the peace process. It must also resolutely confront spoilers, he emphasized, adding that a strong and clear message must be sent that terrorist activities and violence would not pay. Security and development were mutually reinforcing, he said, adding that the Somali people needed to be given hope through rehabilitation, reconstruction and economic development. The Transitional Federal Government required massive international support to build a viable economic base and institutions, he said, noting that the OIC had opened a humanitarian affairs office in the country and had signed an agreement with the World Food Programme for the implementation of a comprehensive food security programme that would benefit around 400,000 citizens in southern and central Somalia.
ARAYA DESTA ( Eritrea) said that, taking cognizance of the realities on the ground, many Member States, including Council members, were now calling for an inclusive, Somali-led and Somali-owned political process to restore peace and stability to the country. That positive approach was meeting with some resistance, which was only to be expected from parties wishing to cling to policies and arrangement that had clearly failed, he said. Concerted efforts were being made to maintain the status quo, even while the military involvement of external actors continued unabated.
Even with the new approach of an inclusive Somali-led political process, there would be no quick and easy solution to the crisis in Somalia, he said, noting that nothing else had worked. The Somali people must be provided with the space and opportunity to resolve their own problems and protect the process from negative and destructive interference. Eritrea stood ready to make its own modest constructive contribution to the inclusive Somali political process and was prepared to cooperate actively with the good offices of the Secretary-General in the search for peace and stability in Somalia, he said.
PARK IN-KOOK ( Republic of Korea), stressing the need to continue helping Somalia work towards post-transitional governance, said communicating with all stakeholders was vital, and the role of regional organizations was important as the transitional process came to an end. The international community should bolster training and provide equipment for the Somali security forces because strong support for the Transitional Federal Government’s security institutions was crucial to combating terrorism. That was particularly true because fighting had intensified in Mogadishu over the last few weeks and the overall significance of the unification of Al-Shabaab and Hizbul Islam remained unclear. It was important to keep in mind the links between terrorism in Somalia and the country’s overall security, economic and political situation, he stressed.
Deeply concerned about piracy off the Somali coast and its impact on the region and beyond, he recalled that in January, a Republic of Korea navy rescue operation had responded under the mandate of Council resolution 1851 (2008), successfully engaging pirates in the Gulf of Aden and rescuing 21 sailors aboard a Korean vessel. He said he was also deeply concerned about Somalia’s humanitarian situation and the cyclical nature of its relationship with piracy. The international community should increase humanitarian aid across the board, he said, pointing out that, while the $4.5 million in United Nations aid delivered in January and the $60 million in additional assistance was a good start, more must be done for Somalia, which had one of the world’s highest unemployment and malnutrition rates. Without more steps to alleviate that situation and promote development, those with no other viable economic options would continue to resort to piracy as a means of sustenance, he said.
* *** *