Security Council Expresses Deep Concern at Piracy in Gulf of Guinea; Urges States of Region to Convene Summit to Develop Common Maritime Strategy against Threat

29 February 2012
SC/10562

Security Council Expresses Deep Concern at Piracy in Gulf of Guinea; Urges States of Region to Convene Summit to Develop Common Maritime Strategy against Threat

29 February 2012
Security Council
SC/10562
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Security Council

6727th Meeting (AM)

Security Council Expresses Deep Concern at Piracy in Gulf of Guinea; Urges States

 

of Region to Convene Summit to Develop Common Maritime Strategy against Threat

 

Unanimously Adopts Resolution 2039 (2012); Requests Secretary-General

To Support Summit through United Nations Offices in West, Central Africa

Expressing deep concern about piracy and armed robbery at sea in Africa’s Gulf of Guinea, the Security Council this morning urged States of the region to act with dispatch to counter the scourge at the national and regional levels, encouraging international partners to provide support for regional patrols, coordination centres and the implementation of a region-wide strategy.

Through the unanimous adoption of resolution 2039 (2012) following a debate Monday on the results of the Secretary-General’s assessment mission on the threat (see Press Release SC/10558 of 27 February 2012), the Council urged the States to, as soon as possible, convene a summit to develop a common maritime security strategy that included a legal framework for prosecution of persons engaged in piracy.

Through the text, the Council requested the Secretary-General to support States and regional organizations to convene the piracy summit through the United Nations Offices in West Africa and Central Africa, known as UNOWA and UNOCA respectively.

While stressing the primary responsibility of the States of the Gulf of Guinea to meet the piracy threat, in encouraging international support the Council highlighted assistance for the continuation of the joint patrols already being conducted by Benin and Nigeria.

The meeting began at 10:21 a.m. and ended at 10:23 a.m.

Resolution

The full text of resolution 2039 (2012) reads as follows:

The Security Council,

Recalling its statement of 30 August 2011 and its resolution 2018 (2011) of 31 October 2011, on piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea,

Expressing its deep concern about the threat that piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea pose to international navigation, security and the economic development of states in the region,

Recognizing that piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea affect littoral countries, including their hinterland areas and landlocked countries in the region,

Expressing its concern over the threat that piracy and armed robbery at sea pose to the safety of seafarers and other persons, including through their being taken as hostages, and deeply concerned by the violence employed by pirates and persons involved in piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea,

Affirming that international law, as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea of 10 December 1982, in particular its articles 100, 101 and 105, sets out the legal framework applicable to countering piracy and armed robbery at sea, as well as other ocean activities,

Affirming its respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the States of the Gulf of Guinea and their neighbours,

Further affirming that the provisions of this resolution apply only with respect to the situation in the Gulf of Guinea,

Recognizing the urgent need to devise and adopt effective and practical measures to counter piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea,

Emphasizing the importance of building on existing national, regional and extraregional initiatives to enhance maritime safety and security in the Gulf of Guinea,

Welcoming the initiatives already taken by States in the region and regional organizations, including the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Gulf of Guinea Commission (GGC) and the Maritime Organization for West and Central Africa (MOWCA), to enhance maritime safety and security in the Gulf of Guinea,

Noting the ECCAS comprehensive joint maritime security architecture to counter piracy in the Central African subregion, including the strategy adopted by the ECCAS Peace and Security Council in February 2008, the establishment of the Regional Centre for Maritime Security in Central Africa (CRESMAC) in Pointe-Noire, Congo, as well as the multinational coordination centres in the region,

Further noting the preparatory steps taken by ECOWAS towards developing a maritime security approach through an Integrated Maritime Security Strategy and an Integrated Maritime Plan,

Noting the importance of adopting a comprehensive approach led by the countries of the region to counter the threat of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea and their underlying causes,

Also noting the need for international assistance as part of a comprehensive strategy to support national and regional efforts to assist States in the region with their efforts to address piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea,

Stressing that the coordination of efforts at the regional level is necessary for the development of a comprehensive strategy to counter the threat of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, in order to enable the prevention and interdiction of such criminal activities and to ensure that persons engaging in piracy and armed robbery at sea are prosecuted and punished if convicted, with due regard for internationally recognized rules and principles of international law,

Reiterating that States in the region have a leadership role to play in countering the threat and addressing the underlying causes of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, in close cooperation with organizations in the region, and their partners,

Welcoming the contributions by Member States and international organizations in support of ongoing national and regional efforts to secure Gulf of Guinea coastal areas and conduct naval operations, including the joint patrols carried out by the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Republic of Benin off the coast of Benin, and also welcoming further contributions, upon request,

Expressing its concern about the serious threats to international peace and stability in different regions of the world, in particular in West Africa and the Sahel Region, posed by transnational organized crime, including illicit weapons and drug trafficking, piracy and armed robbery at sea,

Affirming its full commitment to promoting the maintenance of peace and stability in the Gulf of Guinea region,

“1.   Welcomes the report of the Secretary-General’s assessment mission on piracy in the Gulf of Guinea, which was dispatched to the region from 7 to 24 November 2011;

“2.   Encourages national authorities, as well as regional and international partners to consider implementing the recommendations of the assessment mission, as appropriate;

“3.   Stresses the primary responsibility of the States of the Gulf of Guinea to counter piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea and in this context urges them through ECCAS, ECOWAS and the GGC to work towards the convening of the planned joint Summit of Gulf of Guinea States to develop a regional anti‑piracy strategy, in cooperation with the African Union;

“4.   Requests the Secretary-General through the United Nations Office of West Africa (UNOWA) and the United Nations Office of Central Africa (UNOCA) to support States and subregional organizations in convening the joint Summit, as referenced in resolution 2018 (2012), to the extent feasible;

“5.   Urges States of the region of the Gulf of Guinea to take prompt action, at national and regional levels with the support of the international community where able, and by mutual agreement, to develop and implement national maritime security strategies, including for the establishment of a legal framework for the prevention, and repression of piracy and armed robbery at sea and as well as prosecution of persons engaging in those crimes, and punishment of those convicted of those crimes and encourages regional cooperation in this regard;

“6.   Encourages Benin and Nigeria to extend their joint patrols beyond March 2012, while the countries of the Gulf of Guinea continue to work towards building their capacities to independently secure their coastlines and also encourages international partners to consider providing support, as needed, in that regard and to the extent feasible;

“7.   Encourages the States of the Gulf of Guinea, ECOWAS, ECCAS and GGC, to develop and implement transnational and transregional maritime security coordination centres covering the whole region of the Gulf of Guinea, building on existing initiatives, such as those under the auspices of the International Maritime Organization (IMO);

“8.   Encourages international partners to provide support to regional States and organizations for the enhancement of their capabilities to counter piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, including their capacity to conduct regional patrols, to establish and maintain joint coordination centres and joint information-sharing centres, and for the effective implementation of the regional strategy, once adopted;

“9.   Requests the Secretary-General to support efforts towards mobilizing resources following the creation of the regional strategy to assist in building national and regional capacities in close consultation with States and regional and extraregional organizations;

“10.  Further requests the Secretary-General to keep the Security Council regularly informed through UNOWA and UNOCA, on the situation of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, including on progress made regarding the joint Summit as well as by ECOWAS, ECCAS and the GGC to develop a comprehensive strategy to counter piracy and armed robbery at sea;

“11.  Decides to remain seized of the matter.”

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For information media • not an official record
For information media. Not an official record.