Security Council Renews Mandate of United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus for 6 Months, Unanimously Adopting Resolution 2369 (2017)

SC/12931
27 July 2017
8014th Meeting (AM)

Security Council Renews Mandate of United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus for 6 Months, Unanimously Adopting Resolution 2369 (2017)

The Security Council today renewed the mandate of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) for six months today, while asking the Secretary-General to conduct a strategic review of the mission.

Unanimously adopting resolution 2369 (2017), the Council extended UNFICYP’s mandate until 31 January 2018.  Noting that the most recent Conference on Cyprus had not resulted in a settlement, it called on the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot leadership to continue to engage, as a matter of urgency, in consultations with the mission on the demarcation of a buffer zone and on the 1989 aide-mémoire, with a view to reaching early agreement on outstanding issues.

Also by that text, the Council requested that the Secretary-General conduct a review of UNFICYP and make recommendations on how the mission should be optimally configured to implement its existing mandate, exclusively on the basis of a rigorous, evidence-based assessment of the impact of its activities, and to report on the results of the review within four months.

Egypt’s representative called on all parties to respect the sovereignty and independence of Cyprus as an independent State.  Stressing the importance of UNFICYP, he called for a continued role for the mission in creating a safe environment in Cyprus and supporting efforts to relaunch communications between the parties.  Cyprus was a friendly country with economic, political and cultural ties to Egypt, he said, expressing hope that a just settlement would be reached through a transparent and inclusive process.

The meeting began at 10:05 a.m. and ended at 10:10 a.m.

Resolution

The full text of resolution 2369 (2017) reads as follows:

The Security Council,

Welcoming the report of the Secretary-General of 10 July 2017 (document S/2017/586) on the United Nations operation in Cyprus,

Noting that the Government of Cyprus is agreed that, in view of the prevailing conditions on the island, it is necessary to keep the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) beyond 31 July 2017,

Noting the intention of the Secretary-General to report on his good offices in the next reporting period, echoing the Secretary-General’s firm belief that the responsibility for finding a solution lies first and foremost with the Cypriots themselves, and reaffirming the primary role of the United Nations in assisting the parties to bring the Cyprus conflict and division of the island to a comprehensive and durable settlement,

Welcoming the commitments set out in the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot leaders’ joint statement of 2 April 2017 on the basis of the Joint Declaration adopted on 11 February 2014, further welcoming the progress in negotiations since then, including the reconvening of the Conference on Cyprus under United Nations auspices in June 2017, the participants’ commitment to support the process towards a comprehensive settlement in Cyprus, and the support provided by the Secretary‑General and the Secretary‑General’s Special Adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide,

Recalling the importance attached by the international community to all parties engaging fully, flexibly and constructively in negotiations to secure a settlement and noting that the recent Conference on Cyprus has not resulted in an enduring, comprehensive and just settlement based on a bicommunal, bizonal federation with political equality, as set out in relevant Security Council resolutions, encouraging the sides to sustain their commitment to such a settlement, and stressing that the status quo is unsustainable,

Noting the need to advance the consideration of and discussions on military confidence-building measures, calling for renewed efforts to implement all remaining confidence-building measures, and for agreement on and implementation of further steps to build trust between the communities,

Reaffirming the importance of continued crossings of the Green Line by Cypriots, and encouraging the opening by mutual agreement of other crossing points,

Convinced of the many important benefits, including economic benefits for all Cypriots, that would flow from a comprehensive and durable Cyprus settlement, urging the two sides and their leaders to foster positive public rhetoric, and encouraging them clearly to explain the benefits of the settlement, as well as the need for increased flexibility and compromise in order to secure it, to both communities well in advance of any referenda,

Highlighting the importance, both political and financial, of the supporting role of the international community, and in particular that of all parties concerned in taking practical steps towards helping the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot leaders to sustain their commitment to a settlement under United Nations auspices; taking note of the assessment of the Secretary-General that the security situation on the island and along the Green Line remains stable, and urging all sides to avoid any action, including violations of the military status quo, which could lead to an increase in tension, undermine the progress achieved so far, or damage the goodwill on the island,

Recalling the Secretary-General’s firm belief that the situation in the buffer zone would be improved if both sides accepted the 1989 aide-memoire used by the United Nations,

Noting with regret that the sides are withholding access to the remaining minefields in the buffer zone, and that demining in Cyprus must continue, noting the continued danger posed by mines in Cyprus, noting also proposals and discussions, as well as positive initiatives on demining, and urging rapid agreement on facilitating the recommencement of demining operations and clearance of the remaining minefields,

Commending the work of the Committee on Missing Persons, highlighting the importance of intensifying its activities, and therefore the need to provide all information required as expressed in the press release of the Committee on Missing Persons on 28 July 2016 regarding review of archival materials, noting that nearly half of all missing persons have yet to be located and around 61.5 per cent have yet to be identified, urging the opening up of access to all areas expeditiously to allow the Committee to carry out its work, and trusting that this process will promote reconciliation between the communities,

Agreeing that active participation of civil society groups, including women’s groups, is essential to the political process and can contribute to making any future settlement sustainable, recalling that women play a critically important role in peace processes, welcoming all efforts to promote bicommunal contacts and events including, inter alia, on the part of all United Nations bodies on the island, and urging the two sides to promote the active engagement of civil society and the encouragement of cooperation between economic and commercial bodies and to remove all obstacles to such contacts,

Stressing the need for the Council to pursue a rigorous, strategic approach to peacekeeping deployments,

Recognizing the need to regularly review all peacekeeping operations to ensure efficiency and effectiveness, including a review of UNFICYP when appropriate, and noting the importance of transition planning in relation to the settlement, including recommendations as appropriate for further adjustments to the mandate of UNFICYP, force levels and other resources and concept of operations, taking into account developments on the ground and the views of the parties,

Noting with appreciation the efforts of the Secretary-General, Special Representative Elizabeth Spehar, Special Adviser Espen Barth Eide,

Echoing the Secretary-General’s gratitude to the Government of Cyprus and the Government of Greece for their voluntary contributions to the funding of UNFICYP, and his request for further voluntary contributions from other countries and organizations, and expressing appreciation to Member States that contribute personnel to UNFICYP,

Welcoming and encouraging efforts by the United Nations to sensitize peacekeeping personnel in the prevention and control of HIV and AIDS and other communicable diseases in all its peacekeeping operations,

“1.   Welcomes the progress of the leaders-led process since 11 February 2014 and the efforts of the leaders and their negotiators to reach a comprehensive and durable settlement, notes the outcome of the Conference on Cyprus and encourages the sides and all involved participants to sustain their commitment to a settlement under United Nations auspices;

“2.   Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General (document S/2017/586);

“3.   Reaffirms all its relevant resolutions on Cyprus, in particular resolution 1251 of 29 June 1999 and subsequent resolutions;

“4.   Recalls Security Council resolution 2338 (2017), and calls upon the two leaders to:

(a)   Put their efforts behind further work on reaching convergences on the core issues;

(b)   Continue to work with the Technical Committees with the objective of improving the daily lives of the Cypriots;

(c)   Improve the public atmosphere for negotiation to secure a settlement, including by focussing public messages on convergences and the way ahead, and delivering more constructive and harmonized messages; and

(d)   Increase the participation of civil society in the process as appropriate;

“5.   Requests the Secretary-General to maintain transition planning in relation to a settlement, guided by progress in negotiations, and encourages the sides to engage with each other, as well as with UNFICYP and the United Nations good offices mission in this regard;

“6.   Urges the implementation of confidence-building measures, and looks forward to agreement on and implementation of further such mutually acceptable steps, including military confidence-building measures and the opening of crossing points already agreed upon and others, that can contribute to a conducive environment for a settlement;

“7.   Welcomes all efforts to accommodate the Committee on Missing Persons’ exhumation requirements as well as the joint appeal for information issued by the two leaders on 28 May 2015, and calls upon all parties to provide more expeditious, full access to all areas, given the need to intensify the Committee’s work;

“8.   Expresses its full support for UNFICYP and decides to extend its mandate for a further period ending 31 January 2018;

“9.   Calls on both sides to continue to engage, as a matter of urgency and while respecting the mandate of UNFICYP, in consultations with UNFICYP on the demarcation of the buffer zone, and on the United Nations 1989 aide-memoire, with a view to reaching early agreement on outstanding issues;

“10.  Calls on the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkish forces to restore in Strovilia the military status quo which existed there prior to 30 June 2000;

“11.  Calls on both sides to allow access to deminers and to facilitate the removal of the remaining mines in Cyprus within the buffer zone, and urges both sides to extend demining operations outside the buffer zone;

“12. Requests the Secretary-General to conduct a strategic review of UNFICYP focused on findings and recommendations for how UNFICYP should be optimally configured to implement its existing mandate, based exclusively on rigorous evidence-based assessment of the impact of UNFICYP activities, and further requests the Secretary-General to report on the results of this review when appropriate within four months of the adoption of this resolution;

“13.  Expresses its full support for the Secretary-General in continuing to keep his Good Offices at the disposal of the parties, and requests the Secretary-General to submit a report on implementation of this resolution by 10 January 2018 and to keep the Security Council updated on events as necessary;

“14.  Welcomes the efforts being undertaken by UNFICYP to implement the Secretary-General’s zero-tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse and to ensure full compliance of its personnel with the United Nations code of conduct, requests the Secretary-General to continue to take all necessary action in this regard and to keep the Security Council informed, and urges troop-contributing countries to take appropriate preventive action including the conduct of predeployment awareness training, and to take disciplinary action and other action to ensure full accountability in cases of such conduct involving their personnel;

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

For information media. Not an official record.