Adopting Resolution 2245 (2015), Security Council Consolidates United Nations Mission in Somalia to Better Respond to Dramatic Spike in Support Requests

SC/12109
9 November 2015
7551st Meeting (AM)

Adopting Resolution 2245 (2015), Security Council Consolidates United Nations Mission in Somalia to Better Respond to Dramatic Spike in Support Requests

In a ministerial meeting today, the Security Council approved changes to the United Nations mission in Somalia, consolidating efforts around the strategic objectives established for the country to better respond to a dramatic expansion of requested support.

Through the unanimous adoption of resolution 2245 (2015), the Council named a successor to the United Nations Support Office for the African Union Mission in Somalia (UNSOA), which would be called the United Nations Support Office in Somalia (UNSOS), given the expansion of its mandate since 2009.  In so doing, it drew upon the recommendations of a joint African Union-United Nations review of AMISOM had conducted earlier in 2015, a 7 October letter from the Secretary-General and a 14 October briefing by the Under-Secretary-General for Field Support.

The change would better reflect its client base, which, in addition to the African Union Mission (AMISOM), included the United Nations Assistance Mission (UNSOM) and the Somali National Army.  By the text, the Council requested the Secretary-General, through the Department of Field Support, to continue to provide logistical support to a maximum of 22,126 uniformed AMISOM personnel and 70 AMISOM civilians and the Somali National Army on joint operations with AMISOM and UNSOM.

To AMISOM, the mission would support the provision of rations, fuel, water, accommodation and infrastructure, maintenance services — including all partner-donated and partner owned-equipment jointly recognized as required by the African Union, United Nations and troop contributors.

It would support the reimbursement of contingent-owned equipment and of basic supplies and services required to allow AMISOM contingents to sustain themselves, taking into account the “operational tempo” of that Mission’s activities.  Reimbursements would be limited to those categories, among others, would align with United Nations standards, rates and practices and be subject to reviews by UNSOS.  Where a troop contributor was unable to provide the “sustainment” required, limited support — in lieu of reimbursement — would be provided.

To UNSOM, the mission would support the standard range of services, including to strengthen UNSOM’s presence in all capitals of Interim Regional Administrations.

To Somali federal security institutions, the mission would provide, on an exceptional basis, a “targeted support package” for 10,900 troops in the Somali National Army on joint operations with AMISOM.  Where they were part of AMISOM’s overall strategic concept, the Council reaffirmed that direct support would be funded from an appropriate United Nations trust fund.

Further, the Council decided that the Head of UNSOS would report to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on the delivery of the mandate.  That person should also have “separate quantifiable compacts” with the Head of UNSOM and the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission for Somalia. 

More broadly, the Council renewed its call to the African Union to speed the deployment of AMISOM force enablers and multipliers as a critical condition for logistical support to AMISOM.

After the adoption, Nicholas Kay, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of UNSOM, said the country was well advanced in its political and security transformation from a failed to recovering State.  “We should never forget that political progress had only been made possible by the sacrifices of the [Somali National Army] SNA and AMISOM forces,” he said.

Despite progress, there was still a long way to go, however, in terms of service delivery, rule of law and inclusive politics.  The common agreement to focus on Somali-owned and led political state-building had driven such success, as had creative approaches and partnerships, a commitment by African Union forces, the United Nations integrated “deliver as one” effort and a willingness to innovate.  Scaling back now would crush the hopes of millions of Somalis, endanger peace and security in the Horn of Africa and East Africa, bolster violent extremism globally and risk a renewed exodus of refugees, he warned.

Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, Prime Minister of Somalia, said his country was experiencing an “all-time collective crescendo momentum” on the political process, with the political leadership committed to take forward what was in the best interest of the people.  “I am delighted to echo Mr. Kay’s eloquent remarks on the progress Somalia has made with the Council’s unrelenting support over the years,” he said, adding that even greater milestones could be discussed in the next high-level partnership forum in February 2016.  In October, a national consultative forum had been inaugurated and regional-level consultations would soon start to discuss the best possible election options in the absence of a one-person-one vote process.

Underlining concerns, he said the Somali National Army lacked in equipment, training and logistical support, which had hampered the envisioned sustained offensive operations against Al-Shabaab.  The Government still faced challenges to assume full responsibility for salary payments to security forces.  Al-Shabaab’s recent offensive attacks against AMISOM and the Somali National Army were disconcerting, he stressed, and the network’s recent allegiance to the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant/Sham (ISIL/ISIS) was not to be taken lightly. 

On that point, Tété Antonio, Permanent Observer of the African Union to the United Nations, commended the “significant” support to the Union to neutralize Al-Shabaab and create conditions for the conclusion of the political process.  “We must not shy away from assessing the effectiveness of efforts deployed on the ground” by which promoting a truly Somali-owned process had been possible. 

Indeed, he said, AMISOM had extended its communication to cover an expanded area of operations.  Al-Shabaab was taking advantage of that expansion to target AMISOM and the Somali National Army and was carrying out attacks with “increasing efficiency” on the Government and local populations.  Its alliance with the so-called Islamic State was another concern.  Going forward, the Union would consult with the Secretariat on relevant provisions of the text to ensure that the support to AMISOM considered the “peculiar conditions” in which it operated, he said.

“The stakes are high,” said Susana Malcorra, Chef de Cabinet of the Secretary-General, urging the international community to stand strong with Somalia.  For its part, the United Nations would not waver on its commitment to AMISOM, she said, calling on all stakeholders to ensure that military and political strategies were fully aligned.  The Somali forces must also be strengthened.  Moreover, the Council must support a comprehensive approach that offered Somalis a better alternative to Al-Shabaab, including through greater investments in human rights, justice and economic opportunities, especially for youth.  “This is our path to defeating terrorism and realizing the vision of Somalis for a united federal country,” she asserted.

In the ensuring debate, speakers welcomed that the resolution had reshaped the logistical support mandate aimed at greater operational effectiveness.  Some delegates emphasized that while UNSOA had made a meaningful contribution in Somalia, it had been chronically under-resourced.  Several outlined how their Governments would support AMISOM with military, logistical and training expertise.  In going forward, the challenge was to maintain and fully coordinate those efforts, they agreed.

Echoing a common view, Security Council President Philip Hammond, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs of United Kingdom, speaking in his national capacity, said that a credible electoral process in 2016 would be critical, without which international support — and Somalis’ right to hold their leaders accountable — could be undermined.

Delivering statements at the ministerial level were representatives of Malaysia and Spain.  Speakers from the United States, New Zealand, Venezuela, France, Chile, Angola, Nigeria, Lithuania, Russian Federation, Chad, Jordan and China also spoke.

The meeting began at 9:04 a.m. and ended at 11:30 a.m.

Statements

Speaking after the vote, the representative of the Russian Federation said his Government had supported the resolution as it — like others — was interested in ensuring sustainable peace and stability in Somalia and the Horn of Africa.  Yet, he had noted the “extreme density” of the text and resource language, which should be minimized.  He also drew attention to the tight timeframe for the work and the need to support temporary procedures and rules of the Council, where amendments could be made.  Placing the text “in blue” did not mean the end of the work process.  The deployment of Government staff was in a “grey area” and he was concerned about that issue as a matter of principle.

SUSANA MALCORRA, Chef de Cabinet of the Secretary-General, said “the stakes are high” and that the international community must stand strong with Somalia.  Next year could see the peaceful transition of power, which would mark an extraordinary stage in the country’s transition to democracy.  She urged the Government to engage as many people as possible in that process, including women youth and minorities.  Somalia was consolidating its federal system, a process she hoped would conclude by the end of 2016.  It was also important to achieve reconciliation in all regions.

Progress on the Constitution was also essential and she welcomed efforts to “re-energize” the delayed review.  The United Nations would not waver in its commitment to African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and she called on all stakeholders to ensure that military and political strategies were fully aligned.  The Somali forces must also be strengthened so they could secure the country.  But, military operations alone would not defeat Al Shabaab.  She called on the Council to support a comprehensive approach to address that threat by offering Somalis a better alternative, including through greater investments in human rights, justice and economic opportunities, especially for youth.

She said “we must denounce the propaganda of Al-Shabaab” while addressing the grievances that drove recruitment and opening the way for all to renounce violence.  It was also essential to strengthen people’s chances for a better future, and she urged States to increase their contributions to the New Deal Somalia Compact before its February review and to urgently provide opportunities for women and girls, who continued to suffer from poverty and violence without fair participation in decision making.  The Government should exceed its goal of 30 per cent women’s representation in Parliament.

In that context, she said, human rights were essential for offering a credible alternative violent extremism.  She commended the Government for having participated in the Human Rights Council’s universal periodic review process, stressing the importance of observing international humanitarian law and human rights law in the conduct of military operations.  More could be done through the new United Nations support office and she was committed to strengthening collaboration in that regard.

Some 3.2 million people still required assistance to survive and, in the last six months, more people had lost their ability to feed their families, most of whom were internally displaced.  That dire situation was worsening with expected flooding and drought.  Donors could make the difference between life and death, she said, calling for increased support.

 

For its part, the United Nations would continue to help Somalia achieve political progress, increase its security situation and improve human rights.  “This is our path to defeating terrorism and realizing the vision of Somalis for a united federal country,” she asserted.

NICHOLAS KAY, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), said the country was well advanced in its political and security transformation from a failed to recovering State.  When the Mission began in 2013, entire districts were under the control of Al-Shabaab.  Today, a new Somalia was emerging.  Three new federal member states would join Puntland as foundation stones of the new federal Somalia and the fifth would be formed from Hiraan and Middle Shabelle.  He urged for continued progress on national consultations leading to an electoral process in 2016.

“We should never forget that political progress had only been made possible by the sacrifices of the Somali National Army [SNA] and AMISOM forces,” he said.  Today, there was intense interchange between Mogadishu and the regions.  In each of the merging federal member states there was a government, an assembly and an agreed charter.  There was still a long way to go, however, in terms of service delivery, rule of law and inclusive politics.  At last, “Somalia is facing the problems of a country coming together rather than falling apart,” he said, noting that it had been more than three years since pirates had seized a ship off the coast of Somalia.

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has helped state institutions to start delivering a range of services and, with the World Bank, was establishing a professional civil service.  In 2014, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) had led early action to avoid repeating the devastating famine of 2011.  In 2015, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) had begun a programme to assist thousands of refugees to return voluntarily to Somalia.  Last month, the World Health Organization (WHO) had declared Somalia polio-free.  Schools across Somalia were reopening.  Enormous challenges remained, however.

Five key elements had driven Somalia’s success, he said.  First and foremost was the common agreement to focus on Somali-owned and led political state-building.  The second had been creative approaches and partnerships and third had consisted of the African Union forces’ courage and commitment.  Fourth, there had been a truly integrated “deliver as one” effort by the United Nations.  Finally, there were the unity and willingness to innovate and the trust of the Security Council.

Scaling back now would crush the hopes of millions of Somalis, endanger peace and security in the Horn of Africa and East Africa, bolster violent extremism globally and risk a renewed exodus of refugees, he warned.  Three elements were necessary, he said:  local community recovery and development in areas recovered from Al-Shabaab presence; supporting economic recovery nationwide; and a more comprehensive approach to Al-Shabaab to engage those who truly wished to join a Somali-led political state-building project.  Today’s decision to establish an enhanced UNSOM was vital for the next phase.

“While rightly looking back and forward,” he said, “we should be somberly realistic about the present.”  The vast majority of Somalis continued to suffer abject poverty, displacement, insecurity and predatory corruption, with little rule of law or respect for human rights.  Delivering short-term humanitarian and development progress, especially given the impact of El Niño, would be hard.  Continuing, he said 2016 would be a year of heightened political tensions.  Al-Shabaab would do everything it could to disrupt federalism and the electoral process.  Somali’s leader needed to reconcile competing demands and international partners needed to stay the course, be united, respect Somali ownership, but be crystal clear on their expectation that Somalis needed to agree the rules for the 2016 electoral process and then stick to them, he concluded.

TÉTÉ ANTONIO, Permanent Observer of the African Union to the United Nations, commended the Council’s commitment to the pursuit of peace and security in Somalia, having extended “significant” support to the African Union to neutralize Al-Shabaab and created conditions for the conclusion of the political process.  AMISOM’s progress would not have possible without the support of partners, such as the European Union and the United States.

“We should applaud the federal Government of Somalia for reaffirming its commitment to respecting the constitutionally mandated terms of the legislature and executive,” which would expire in August and September 2016 respectively, he said.  The launch of the National Consultative Forum had marked another promising step, as it had begun the initial debate on approaches to the electoral process.  In the coming days, public consultations would start in various parts of the country and he hoped national and regional stakeholders would maintain their “unity of purpose”.  Progress also had been made in state formation and towards reviewing the provisional Constitution, he said, developments that had “greatly enhanced” prospects for concluding the political process.

Against that backdrop, he said, all partners should support Somali stakeholders.  The African Union, including through AMISOM, whose mandate included a political component, remained ready to support those processes.  “We must not shy away from assessing the effectiveness of efforts deployed on the ground” by which promoting a truly Somali-owned process was possible, he said.  Through such an approach, stakeholders could ensure that ground realities were being considered at every step and that efforts were being maximized.

Today’s threat had changed over the year.  The Somali National Army and AMISOM had carried out various offensives, including in the Juba Corridor, through which they had limited Al-Shabaab’s revenue and movement.  At the same time, however, AMISOM had extended its lines of communication, which now covered an expanded area of operations.  Al-Shabaab was taking advantage of that expansion to conduct targeted attacks against AMISOM and the National Army.  It was also conducting asymmetric attacks with “increasing efficiency” on the Government and local populations, most recently on a Mogadishu hotel.  Another concern, he said, was the alliance between Al-Shabaab and the so-called Islamic State, an avenue it was exploring for its survival and which all stakeholders must closely monitor.

There was a pressing need to step up efforts to complete the expansion phase and liberate Al-Shabaab-controlled areas, paving the way for the stabilization phase by March 2016.  The African Union Commission had developed a revised concept of operations for AMISOM, he said, which had been sent to the Secretary-General on 23 October 2015 for transmission to the Council.  The Strategic End-State, as identified in the concept of operations, was to “significantly deplete” the military and related capacity of Al-Shabaab and other armed opposition groups.  The security strategy was to create and preserve an enabling environment for peace.

The concept of operations had addressed the challenges identified by the joint African Union/United Nations benchmarking exercise, he said.  The most consistent view expressed was the need for timely and flexible support to AMISOM through a robust support office.  In its 18 September communiqué, the African Union Peace and Security Council, having welcomed the strategic review of the support office to AMISOM, underlined the imperative for that office to remain an independent and dedicated capacity that reported to Headquarters and was accountable to the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission for all matters related to logistical support for AMISOM.

Regarding support to the Somali National Army, he reiterated the relevance of the Peace and Security Council’s position, regretting that it had not been adequately reflected in the resolution.  Going forward, the Union would consult with the Secretariat on relevant provisions of the text to ensure that the required support to AMISOM considered the “peculiar conditions” in which it operated, he said, underlining the importance of recognizing that, in deploying the mission, the African Union was acting on the Council’s behalf.  As such, the United Nations had a duty to provide all support to AMISOM, whose action aimed at creating conditions conducive for the early deployment of a United Nations peacekeeping operation.  The European Union’s decision to cut allowances to uniformed personnel by 20 per cent in January would have a serious adverse effect on their morale, he concluded.

OMAR ABDIRASHID ALI SHARMARKE, Prime Minister of the Federal Republic of Somalia, said the country was now experiencing an “all-time collective crescendo momentum” on the political process.  Somali’s political leadership, at federal and regional levels, was committed to take forward what was in the best interest of their people and country.  That consisted of completing state-building and electoral processes within the current Government’s mandate, which would end in August 2016.  Although much progress had been made, the Government had not done as much in the economic sector as on the political and security fronts.

“I am delighted to echo [Special Representative to the Secretary-General] SRSG Kay’s eloquent remarks on the progress Somalia has made with the Council’s unrelenting support over the years,” he said.  Even greater milestones could be discussed in the next high-level partnership forum in February 2016.  In October, a national consultative forum had been inaugurated, drawing together high-level representation from the four regional administrations, the top leadership of the federal Government and representatives of international partners.  Regional-level consultations would start shortly to discuss the best possible election options in the absence of a one-person-one vote process.  He expected to welcome a new regional administration, in Hiraan and Middle Shabelle, by the end of the year.  The Constitution review process was also progressing.

The federal Government of Somalia had made public its commitment to security sector reform, especially in the area of transparency and accountability.  The “Guulwade Victory Plan” was key to the success of the forces integration process.  The lack of donor support for that plan, however, had not been inspiring.  The Somali National Army lacked in equipment, training and logistical support, which had hampered the envisioned sustained offensive operations against Al-Shabaab.  The Government still faced challenges to assume full responsibility for salary payments to security forces.  Al-Shabaab’s recent offensive attacks against AMISOM and the Somali National Army were disconcerting, he stressed.

Somalia terror network’s recent proclamation of allegiance to ISIS was not to be taken lightly, he continued.  The resolution of the crisis in Yemen was crucial.  Support for the “Guulwade Victory Plan” was also necessary.  Although Somalia’s special forces had performed impeccably in the face of Al-Shabaab’s complex attacks on civilian business premises, their intelligence and pre-emptive capacities remained wanting.  With better coordination among AMISOM forces and between AMISOM and the Somali National Army, the tables against Al-Shabaab could be turned.

He said that although there had been almost no incidents of piracy for the last two years, there was a need for sustainability.  In that regard, Somalia needed the support of the Council on illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing in Somali waters.  Poverty and lack of economic prosperity had played a major role in appeal to extremism and terrorism.  Uneducated, underemployed and unemployed youth continued to be a ticking time-bomb for Somalia.  Investment in the country in supporting job creation initiatives, education, vocational training and other basic infrastructure development programmes would lead to true sustainability.  The Government was putting in place the necessary legal frameworks to attract and guarantee investments.

Council President PHILIP HAMMOND, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, United Kingdom, speaking in his national capacity, recalled that it was only four years ago that Al-Shabaab had controlled major cities, including Mogadishu, and 2010 alone had seen 174 pirate attacks.  Today, AMISOM and the Somali National Army controlled 80 per cent of the country.  The United Kingdom was Somalia’s second largest bilateral donor and had opened an embassy in Mogadishu, the only European Union country to have done so.  As UNSOA had been under-resourced, he welcomed the support provided to it through today’s text and noted that the challenge was to maintain and fully coordinate efforts. 

On the security front, he urged the implementation of the President’s commitment to major security sector reform.  For its part, the United Kingdom would continue to deploy military, logistical and training expertise in support of AMISOM.  In 2016, a credible electoral process would be critical, without which international support — and Somalis’ right to hold their leaders accountable — could be undermined.  His Government was committed to supporting such progress and he urged the Council — and Somalia’s international allies — to commit to a unity of purpose.

ANIFAH AMAN, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Malaysia, said he was heartened by Somalia’s state formation efforts and urged all parties to conclude the necessary arrangements for an inclusive, transparent and credible electoral process.  Looking ahead, he said future United Nations engagement with Somalia should more closely involve the Organization’s peacekeeping architecture, including the Peacebuilding Commission.  One key challenge which threatened to derail progress was the prevailing security threat, at the forefront of which was Al-Shabaab.  In that regard, he stressed that the fight against terrorism could not be won through force and arms alone; a comprehensive strategy of “winning the hearts and minds” of both perpetrators and their support bases from the civilian population was needed.  At the present delicate stage of transition, it was important that public trust and confidence in national security institutions and actors be maintained.

SAMANTHA POWER (United States) said that at the end of August, Mogadishu had experienced something it had never experienced before, namely an international book fair with thousands from Somalia and abroad attending.  More than half of the books that had been sold had been written by women, which had demonstrated how much had changed in Mogadishu.  That change was real.  Although Al-Shabaab continued to assault Somalia, there had been security and economic gains.  The focus of the international community must now be to sustain momentum on improving security and improving accountability.  The territory Al-Shabaab had controlled was shrinking, but its strikes had demonstrated that it was not defeated.  That goal would require continued partnership between the United Nations and the African Union.

Welcoming today’s adoption, she said the number of personnel supported by UNSOA had quadrupled and it was important that changes in the text had considered the new circumstances.  Bilateral support for AMISOM was also necessary and her country would remain a steadfast partner, providing assistance on several levels, including logistical support.  Lasting security must come through a professional national army that would respect human rights.  A new Somalia would not be established through military force alone.  Improving governance was a priority. Welcoming the commitment to hold elections in 2016, she said the process should be free and fair, representing the will of the Somali people, including internally displaced persons and refugees.  There could be no tolerance for corruption within the Government or in the electoral process.

IGNACIO YBÁÑEZ, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of Spain, said the political process in Somalia had seen significant progress, but with a new horizon set in 2016, much remained to be done.  He urged all political actors to address the process of federalism, the elections and fighting Al-Shabaab.  The elections would be key for Somalia, he said, welcoming the launching of the consultative process and the national consultation forum.  He hoped regional consultations would continue in a spirit of collaboration so that an election format could be agreed upon.  It was important that the electoral process be transparent, fair, inclusive and held within the set timeline.

Al-Shabaab was the greatest threat to security in Somalia and the region and continued to be fully operational, he said, underlining a need to effectively establish state authorities in recovered territories.  Military operations alone could not end terrorism and a broader focus would include a state capable of creating economic opportunities and protecting human rights.  Reform of the security sector was crucial in that regard.  The humanitarian situation was extremely serious, especially with the risk of El Niño, and he was concerned with the number of Somali refugees coming from Yemen for whom there were no resources.  Restoring peace, stability and development was not possible without building a state and Somali ownership in that process was essential, he said in conclusion.

GERARD VAN BOHEMEN (New Zealand) said that, thanks principally to African Union efforts, Somalia was in a better — if still difficult — situation, noting that today, the federal Government and security forces, with AMISOM, had pushed back Al-Shabaab.  Yet, difficulties persisted in establishing security throughout the country, establishing governance structures and reigniting economic development.  The Council must support Somalia and regional states.  “The Council cannot afford to see Somalia slip back into anarchy,” he stressed.  That would require measures to improve coordination, as recommended in the benchmarking review, the proposed high-level coordination forum and the trilateral memorandum of understanding between the United Nations, African Union and troop contributors.  He urged the newly appointed heads of AMISOM, UNSOM and UNSOS to prioritize relationship building and the regional states to support Somalia’s nation rebuilding and to participate in service delivery in areas recovered from Al-Shabaab.

HENRY ALFREDO SUÁREZ MORENO (Venezuela) said the political situation had made progress, citing the representative of Somalia’s 23 October comments on the functioning of state institutions.  He anticipated progress in security sector reform in a new federalized Somalia as a way to integrate the militia into the national security apparatus.  Measures to strengthen peace and political stability must be taken in the context of a holistic approach, which included a focus on socioeconomic conditions.  On the security front, he highlighted fluid triangular cooperation among the African Union, European Union and others, all of which was taking place with the Somali armed forces.  While he supported today’s resolution, he expressed concern over asymmetric attacks by Al-Shabaab and a possible resurgence of intercommunal violence, especially in south central Somalia.  He was also concerned by the drop in humanitarian assistance.  United Nations activities were underfinanced; barely 28 per cent of the needed funds had been received.  The number of foreign embassies had increased while number of humanitarian agencies had fallen.  He urged caution to ensure that the federalism process did not impede political momentum.

ALEXIS LAMEK (France) said the resolution had reshaped the logistical support mandate, with a goal of greater operational effectiveness. “These modifications were necessary,” he said, noting that international efforts, particularly by the African Union, were paying off but could be reversed.  Al-Shabaab had been resilient, operating in a large portion of the country.  The goal was to push it back, he said, expressing condolences for those who had suffered in its 1 November attack.  AMISOM must bring maximum pressure to bear on that situation.  The need for a step forward was reiterated in resolution 2124 (2013) and recalled in resolution 2232 (2015), which should lead to operational improvements, with forces operating within a clear chain of command.  Moreover, force multipliers should be provided and he urged the African Union and troop contributors to heed that call.  Such efforts would be meaningless without the Somali Government’s participation through building a feasible army, which was still a challenge.  The matter of salaries and bonuses should be resolved as a priority.  He welcomed the Government’s agreement on a federal arrangement and the creation of regional administrations.  Elections in 2016 should provide the Government undisputable authority in bringing about peace and development.

CHRISTIÁN BARROS MELET (Chile) said that as 2016 was a key year for Somalia, the international community must redouble efforts to support the country and continue to contribute to the process of constitutional review and political and federal integration.  He hoped women would be included in all stages of peacebuilding as a powerful agent of change.  The offensives against Al-Shabaab should go hand in hand with stabilization and consolidation initiatives.  As terrorism could not be overcome by military means alone, it was vital to address, with the help of the international community, issues of exclusion, poverty and lack of education.  Welcoming the resolution’s adoption, he said it was necessary to adapt the Mission to the situation on the ground.  The resilience of the Somali people was encouraging.  That was why the international community could not fail them, he said.

JULIO HELDER MOURA LUCAS (Angola) said the expected 2016 elections would be a crucial landmark for federal and state-building processes.  Despite progress achieved, there were deep concerns about the political crisis among the highest state actors.  In 2014, tensions had delayed the establishment of parliamentary organs.  He expected that the political actors would put the interests of the state and the people at the centre of their concerns.  The leaders and people must stay united and focus on priorities such as holding elections, advancing the state-building process and bolstering the fight against Al-Shabaab.  The impossibility of a one-man-one-vote system was a matter of concern.  Inclusiveness was a key issue in the political and constitutional process.  Reports regarding corruption, violations of human rights and activities of certain groups were alarming.  It was vital to establish state authority in areas recovered from Al-Shabaab and to provide services.  He was also concerned at difficulties to pay salaries to security forces, which might gravely impede the stability of the country.  Equally important was that the federal Government must ensure strict compliance with international human rights standards in security operations.

U. JOY OGWU (Nigeria) said the formation of federal states and consolidation of regional interim administrators were examples of Somalia’s “significant” progress.  The conduct of the 2016 elections would consolidate the federalist approach and she urged the Government to commit to an inclusive legitimate and peaceful process.  The composition of the Independent Elections Commission and appointment of its chair were great achievements.  She commended AMISOM and the Somali National Army in fighting Al-Shabaab and supported the Juba Corridor operation in that context.  Indeed, efforts by AMISOM and the Somali National Army must be consolidated to forestall that group’s resurgence, through the development of a coordinated stabilization strategy.  She noted the Government’s efforts to build a more integrated, accountable security sector and urged for more attention to be paid to creating a national security architecture.  Welcoming the International Monetary Fund’s consultation mission, the first in 25 years, she expressed hope that there would be progress in the area of debt forgiveness.

RAIMONDA MURMOKAITĖ (Lithuania), addressing the “rare” country-focused open debate, said that recent positive developments in Somalia had provided cautious optimism about the country’s future.  As decision on an electoral model would be taken at the National Consultative Forum in December, finding consensus would be crucial.  An extension of the current political dispensation would be unacceptable, she said.  Somalia deserved a political transition in 2016 through an electoral process that provided the federal Parliament, President and Government enhanced legitimacy with a new mandate.  Eradicating poverty and addressing the fragile economy, the lack of alternative livelihoods and weak Governance structures must remain at the heart of the federal Government’s efforts.  As all parties to the conflict had a responsibility to protect civilians, allegations of mass atrocity crimes must be investigated and perpetrators held accountable.  On the alarming allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse by AMISOM troops, she said “we must stand firm with regards to the imperative of a zero tolerance policy” wherever and by whomever such abuse might be committed.

PETR V. ILIICHEV (Russian Federation) shared the Secretary-General’s assessment of UNSOM’s work, stressing that the Mission was acting against the backdrop of a humanitarian crisis and terrorist attacks by Al-Shabaab while being a participant in the political process.  The tense military situation required increased efforts to fight Al-Shabaab through strengthening AMISOM.  That would require an increase in United Nations material and technical support.  He voiced concern about that Al-Shabaab’s coordination with groups such as Boko Haram and Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, citing offensives in Ethiopia and Djibouti.  Pressure must be brought upon on extremists, he said, expressing support for strengthening the capacity of the Somali National Army and AMISOM.  Addressing the growing task load and the underfunding and understaffing of UNSOM must be priorities.  He had no objectives on financing, provided that it was in line with transparency standards for specialized programmes.  For its part, his country had offered humanitarian aid to Somalia and to Somali refugees in other countries through contributions to United Nations funds and programmes.  Between 2011 and 2014, assistance had exceeded $13 million.  In 2015, through the World Food Programme, the Russian Federation had provided assistance to Somalia and to Somali refugees in Yemen.

MAHAMAT ZENE CHERIF (Chad) said while Al-Shabaab had been pushed out of its strategic footholds, the security and political situations had improved, the Independent Electoral Commission had been formed and the International Advisory Forum inaugurated.  He called for further international support for Government efforts to set up its last interim regional administration, speed the constitutional review and develop an electoral process for 2016.  The security situation was a concern, as Al-Shabaab continued to undermine the peace process.  As such, there was an urgent need to increase support to AMISOM and the Somali National Army by providing force multipliers.  Military efforts must be complemented by a political opening socioeconomic efforts and improvement in the humanitarian situation.  He called for more international support in that regard by prioritizing socioeconomic recovery.  He also called for greater assistance for those caught in terrorist-held areas, expressing hope that today’s resolution would allow AMISOM and the Somali National Army to draw upon more significant, flexible and timely logistical support.

DINA KAWAR (Jordan) welcomed the efforts of the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, the Prime Minister and the parliamentarians in restoring the state and security, establishing the interim regional authorities, constitutional reform and the creation of the Independent Electoral Commission.  The federal Government should continue implementing the plan of action as agreed in the Vision 2016 and involve all of society in the process through free and credible elections in 2016.  She called on the international community to continue financial and political support to the federal Government.  Condemning Al-Shabaab’s attacks in Somalia and neighbouring countries, she welcomed the African Union’s important role in Somalia and its efforts geared towards neutralizing that terrorist group.  The international community must support the implementation of a regional strategy to eliminate terrorism by, among other things, cutting off their finances and helping people meet their social and economic needs.  It was important to promote the rule of law and strengthen reconciliation.  There were three million people in need of humanitarian assistance, which required increased support from the international community.

LIU JIEYI (China) said Somalia was entering a period of historic opportunity for state building, but the security and humanitarian situation remained fragile.  The international community must continue to support Somalia in its efforts to achieve lasting peace and development, with Somali leadership and ownership.  He called on Somali leaders to speed up institution building at the local level, to promote social integration through dialogue and consultations and to fully consolidate stability and security.  Welcoming the adoption of resolution 2245 (2015), he hoped it would be fully implemented in order to extend better support to AMISOM and the Somali National Army.  To speed up economic development, the root causes of conflict should be removed, he said, noting that Somalia was rich in resources.  The international community should strengthen its support for development, he said, underlining that China unswervingly supported the peace process and state-building in Somalia.

Resolution

The full text of resolution 2245 (2015) reads as follows:

The Security Council,

Reaffirming its respect for the sovereignty, territorial integrity, political independence and unity of Somalia,

Taking note of the Secretary-General’s letter of 7 October 2015 covering United Nations support activities in Somalia (“the Secretary-General’s letter” S/2015/762),

Taking note of the African Union Peace and Security Council’s 18 September 2015 communiqué on UNSOA,

Noting with appreciation the positive contributions that the UN Support Office to AMISOM (UNSOA) has made to supporting the gains made by the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), and underscoring that such contributions are evidence of a successful partnership between the United Nations, the African Union and Member States in Somalia,

Expressing further its gratitude to AMISOM and Somali National Army (SNA) personnel for the sacrifices which they have made in the fight against Al Shabaab,

Expressing concern at the Secretary-General’s finding that despite the innovation and best efforts of UNSOA, its resources and resultant capacities have not been able to keep pace with the dramatic expansion of the requested logistical support and that there is a progressively widening gap between the logistical support UNSOA is requested to deliver and its capacity to deliver,

Welcoming the observations and recommendations of the Secretary-General to address gaps in UNSOA’s ability to deliver, and further welcoming the steps already being taken and urging their full implementation as a matter of urgency,

“1.   Emphasizes the role and impact of a responsive, effective, efficient and responsible field support platform as a strategic enabler in Somalia, and in view of the expansion of UNSOA’s mission since its establishment in 2009, decides that UNSOA shall bear the name of the UN Support Office in Somalia (UNSOS) (and which will be responsible for support to AMISOM, UNSOM and the Somali National Army on joint operations with AMISOM);

“2.   Welcomes the Secretary-General’s assessment that UNSOS should consolidate and prioritise its efforts in line with the Security Council’s strategic objectives in Somalia, and in that context and on an exceptional basis and owing to the unique character of AMISOM, requests that the Secretary-General continue to provide, under the Department of Field Support, logistical support primarily to a maximum of 22,126 uniformed personnel in AMISOM and 70 AMISOM civilians, the SNA on joint operations with AMISOM, and UNSOM as follows:

AMISOM

(a)   The provision of rations, fuel, water, accommodation and infrastructure, maintenance services including all partner donated and partner owned equipment jointly recognised as being required by the African Union, the United Nations and the TCC, all key equipment such as armoured personnel carriers (APCs) and engineering equipment to be maintained at an operational ready rate of 75% or above, medical support, aviation, strategic communications, explosive hazard management capacities (including mitigation strategies) and strategic personnel and equipment movements;

(b)   The reimbursement of contingent owned equipment, considered owned by the Troop Contributing Country, in line with United Nations rates and practices including through Letters of Assist, with the understanding that eligible equipment shall be limited to equipment jointly recognized as required by the African Union, the United Nations and the TCC and be subject to periodic reviews by UNSOS to ensure full operational capability and that the equipment is fit for purpose;

(c)   The reimbursement of basic and essential supplies and services required to allow AMISOM contingents to sustain themselves, taking into account the operational tempo of AMISOM’s operations and other relevant factors, and including catering equipment and training to ensure safe preparation of rations, VHF/UHF, HF, telephone and TETRA communications; sanitary and cleaning materials; furniture and stationery; and tactical tentage, decides that reimbursements will be limited to these categories, be in line with United Nations standards, rates and practices and subject to periodic reviews by UNSOS to ensure full provision, and further decides that where a TCC is unable to provide the necessary sustainment required by the United Nations and the African Union in the categories above, limited support in lieu of reimbursement will be provided to ensure basic and minimum standards;

(d)   Support the efforts of the African Union and AMISOM in the coordination of support to AMISOM among bilateral partners and the United Nations and maintenance of, and quarterly reporting to the Council as well as donors on, a United Nations Trust Fund to provide financial support to AMISOM;

UNSOM

(e)   The provision of the standard range of mission support services to UNSOM in support of the delivery of its mandate, including support to strengthen its presence in all capitals of Interim Regional Administrations in accordance with paragraph 24 of resolution 2232 (2015);

Somali Federal Security Institutions

(f)   The provision, on an exceptional basis, of a targeted support package for 10,900 troops in the Somali National Army (SNA) on joint operations with AMISOM and where they are a part of AMISOM’s overall strategic concept, which will consist of the provision of food and water, fuel, transport, tents, defence stores and appropriate VHF/UHF, HF communication equipment to enable interoperability with AMISOM, and in-theatre medical evacuation, reaffirms that direct support for this assistance will be funded from an appropriate United Nations Trust Fund with UNSOS personnel responsible for ensuring the delivery of this support package and its compliance with the Secretary-General’s Human Rights Due Diligence Policy and in accordance with paragraph 14 and 15 of resolution 2124;

(g)   The provision on an exceptional and cost recovery basis of in-theatre medical evacuation for the Somali National Police Force on joint operations with AMISOM and where they are a part of AMISOM’s overall strategic concept, for casualties sustained in the line of duty and in areas of operation where similar support is provided to AMISOM and the Somali National Army;

“3.   Emphasizes that any support provided by UNSOS to AMISOM, the Somali National Army and, in the context of paragraph 2g above, the Somali National Police Force shall be in full compliance with the Secretary-General’s Human Rights Due Diligence Policy under the overall responsibility of the SRSG, who shall work in close coordination with the Special Representative of the of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission for Somalia (“the AMISOM SRCC”);

“4.   Welcomes the Secretary-General’s intention to address and streamline administrative and procurement processes, including recruitment, in UNSOS, underlines the importance of UNSOS being able to respond swiftly to the operational demands in Somalia, agrees with the Secretary-General on the need to strengthen the leadership functions within UNSOS, agrees that UNSOS leadership should be Mogadishu-based, and in this context decides that the Head of UNSOS shall report to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) on the delivery of UNSOS’ mandate set out above, and through the SRSG to the Security Council, and stresses that the Head of UNSOS should have separate quantifiable compacts with both the Head of UNSOM for the delivery of support to UNSOM and the AMISOM SRCC for the delivery of support to AMISOM;

“5.   Requests the Secretary-General to continue efforts to support the African Union through advice and guidance on the implementation of a system to address allegations of misconduct, including sexual exploitation and abuse;

“6.   Further requests the Secretary-General to consider the environmental impact of the UN fulfilling its mandated tasks, including carrying out an environmental baseline study and regular environmental impact assessments of the operations of UNSOM and UNSOS;

“7.   Further requests the Secretary-General to support the African Union in the development of its environmental policies in Somalia and their implementation in AMISOM through the provision of mentoring and guidance;

“8.   Underlines the need to ensure full transparency and proper accountability for resources provided, including those made available through the SNA trust fund, and in this context, requests the Secretary-General to ensure a robust internal control framework is in place and regular financial and substantive reporting on the SNA trust fund through the SRSG is provided to the Council as well as to donors;

“9.   Recognizes the unique nature of UNSOS’ mission, welcomes the Secretary-General’s intention to strengthen the joint senior leadership decision-making framework between UNSOM and AMISOM and ensure operational efforts are aligned with a common set of strategic priorities, and requests the Secretary-General to include progress made in establishing this framework in his reports on Somalia to the Security Council;

“10.  Reiterates that the sustainable delivery of logistical support remains a joint responsibility between the United Nations and the African Union,recognizes that the current logistical arrangements as noted in paragraphs 41 and 42 the Secretary-General’s letter are unsustainable, and requests AMISOM and the SNA to ensure that they give the utmost priority to securing key supply routes essential to improve the humanitarian situation in the most affected areas, and as a critical condition for logistical support to AMISOM;

“11.  Renews its call to the AU to expedite the deployment of AMISOM force enablers and multipliers as provided for in paragraph 6 of resolution 2036 (2012), and as called for in resolution 2124 (2013), as well as addressing critical logistical gaps within AMISOM TCCs, and calls on Member States to support the efforts of the AU in mobilising such equipment urgently;

“12.  Encourages Member States to support AMISOM through the provision of assistance to the AU and AMISOM TCCs of financial support for the payment of troop stipends, training, technical assistance and the provision of ammunition (in accordance with the relevant exemption from the arms embargo in Somalia), as well as through uncaveated financial contributions to the AMISOM Trust Fund;

“13.  Requests the Secretary-General to work closely with the AU in improving the performance of AMISOM through the delivery of the AMISOM support package as well as support the African Union in the form of technical and expert advice in its coordination efforts and within the areas of UNSOS mandate;

“14.  Welcomes the intention of Member States to provide uniformed personnel as well as government provided personnel to UNSOS in support of the delivery of its mandated tasks, and looks forward to further details on their deployment;

“15.  Recalls the recommendations of the Secretary General in relation to the provision of a non-lethal support package to the Somali National Police Force and extension of the non-lethal support package for the Somali National Army to Puntland security forces, notes the Secretary-General’s assessment that this support should be provided by entities other than UNSOS, and requests the Secretary-General to keep the Council informed of progress to identify a suitable entity to provide this support;

“16.  Decides to keep UNSOS’ mandate under review in line with that of AMISOM, and in that context, decides to review and take any action to renew or revise the provisions set out in paragraph 2 above before 30 May 2016;

“17.  Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Security Council in detail on the implementation of this resolution, and specifically on any challenges faced by UNSOS in carrying out its mandate as part of Secretary-General’s regular reports on Somalia;

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

For information media. Not an official record.