|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
6116th Meeting (PM)
SECURITY COUNCIL EXTENDS MANDATE OF UNITED NATIONS MISSION IN SUDAN
UNTIL 30 APRIL 2010, UNANIMOUSLY ADOPTING RESOLUTION 1870 (2009)
The Security Council today extended the mandate of the United Nations Mission in Sudan for another year, urging all parties to comply fully with the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement that ended a 21-year civil war between north and south Sudan.
Unanimously adopting resolution 1870 (2009), the Council extended the mandate of the United Nations Mission in the country (UNMIS) through 30 April 2010, requested the Mission to prepare to assist the parties with the planned national referendum in 2011, if requested, and to support credible national elections next year, in coordination with the United Nation Development Programme (UNDP), urging donors to provide technical and material assistance.
The Council established UNMIS four years ago to support implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the Government of the Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army (SPLM/A) that ended the African continent’s longest-running civil war. The Agreement established a ceasefire and provided for power-sharing, wealth-sharing, security arrangements (including the establishment of Joint Integrated Units of Army and Police) and modalities for elections (including a census).
By the resolution, the Council called for all parties to cooperate with full and unrestricted access to UNMIS in monitoring and verification of the Abyei region and urged the mission to deploy sufficient personnel to that region to improve conflict prevention efforts and security to the civilian population. It also called on parties to abide by and implement the decision of the Abyei Arbitration Tribunal at the Permanent Court of Arbitration on the final settlement of the Abyei boundary dispute.
Expressing its concern for the health and welfare of the civilian populations in the Sudan, it called on the parties to support, protect and facilitate all humanitarian operations and personnel in the Sudan, and urged the Government of the Sudan to continue working with the United Nations to ensure the continuity of humanitarian assistance.
Deploring the persistent localized conflict and violence, especially within Southern Sudan, the Council called on UNMIS to strengthen its conflict management capacity by completing as soon as possible its integrated strategy to support local tribal conflict resolution mechanisms. The Council also welcomed the development of a comprehensive strategy on the protection of civilians and encouraged the Mission to continue and complete its work on the strategy in a timely manner.
Following the resolution’s adoption, several Council Members took the floor to note their support for UNMIS and underscore their concern about consequences of the Sudanese Government’s decision in early March to expel 13 major humanitarian organizations and civil society groups from the country. Most feared that action would intensify the already dire humanitarian situation in some parts of the country, particularly in the strife-torn Western Darfur region. They also believed the decision could jeopardize full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.
The representative of the United States said there was no justification for the Sudanese Government’s decision to expel humanitarian workers, and the move simply put too many people at risk. The Sudan was responsible for its people and she urged the Government to stand by its take responsibility to provide for its people.
While Costa Rica’s representative was equally concerned about the humanitarian impact of the Sudanese Government’s action, as well as its impact on completion of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, he also believed the resolution should have explicitly rejected the expulsion of humanitarian workers. His noted that the text of the resolution had made explicit mention of the Government’s action right up to the end of the negotiating process earlier today.
However, the Council adopted a resolution that did not mention the issue. Therefore, when the text referred to the events of 4 and 5 March 2009, Costa Rica would read it as having referred to the decision to expel those groups. He stressed that humanitarian concerns should not be linked to political concerns. The Government of the Sudan was bound by the commitments it had agreed under the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, as well as to its obligations under international law.
The representatives of France, United Kingdom and Japan also made statements.
The meeting began at 4:33 p.m. and ended at 4:46 p.m.
The Security Council met this afternoon to take up the situation in the Sudan and take action on a draft resolution (document S/2009/225), sponsored by the United States, which reads as follows:
“The Security Council,
“Recalling all its resolutions and presidential statements concerning the situation in the Sudan,
“Reaffirming its previous resolutions 1674 (2006) on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, which reaffirms, inter alia, the relevant provisions of the United Nations World Summit outcome document, 1612 (2005) on children in armed conflict, 1502 (2003) on the protection of humanitarian and United Nations personnel, and 1325 (2000) and 1820 (2008) on women, peace, and security,
“Taking note of the report of the Secretary-General on Sudan dated 30 January 2009 (S/2009/6l), the report on Children and Armed Conflict in Sudan dated 10 February 2009 (S/2009/84), including his recommendations, and taking note of the report on Children and Armed Conflict in the Sudan (S/2007/520) dated 29 August 2007, and recalling the conclusions endorsed by the Security Council Working Group on Children and Armed Conflict in the Sudan S/AC.51/2008/7,
“Reaffirming its commitment to the sovereignty, unity, independence, and territorial integrity of the Sudan and to the cause of peace throughout the region,
“Commending the work of the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) in support of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), and commending the continuing commitment by troop- and police-contributing countries in support of this mission,
“Stressing its firm commitment to the cause of peace and stability throughout Sudan and the region, noting the importance of the full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement of 9 January 2005 and recognizing that the CPA has reached a critical stage,
“Encouraging all parties to continue to take positive action in order to consolidate and build upon the achievements since 2005 and reaffirming UNMIS’ invaluable support for these efforts,
“Condemning all acts and forms of violence perpetrated by any party that prevent or hinder peace and stability in Sudan and the region, and deploring its effect in particular on women and children,
“Stressing the importance of providing humanitarian assistance to the civilian populations throughout Sudan, in particular in the Three Areas after the events of 4 and 5 March 2009, and for implementation of the CPA, and taking note of the joint assessment being conducted in the Three Areas and the need for continued cooperation between the Government of Sudan, the United Nations and humanitarian organizations,
“Commending the continuing work of the Assessment and Evaluation Commission (AEC),
“Recalling the commitment of the international community to support the CPA process, including through development assistance, and urging donors to support implementation of the CPA and to honour all pledges of financial and material support,
“Recalling the importance of free and fair elections, including the planned national elections, for national reconciliation, consolidation of democracy, and the restoration of peace and stability,
“Noting with deep concern the inability to reach agreement on the funding of the Abyei Interim Administration thereby preventing it from reducing political instability and insecurity in the Abyei region,
“Welcoming increased cooperation among UNMIS, the UN Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC), the UN Mission in Darfur (UNAMID), and the UN Mission in the Central African Republic and Chad (MINURCAT), and looking forward to the sharing of information among them to help counter regional threats such as the LRA,
“Determining that the situation in the Sudan continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security,
“1. Decides to extend the mandate of UNMIS until 30 April 2010, with the intention to renew it for further periods as may be required;
“2. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Council every three months on the implementation of the mandate of UNMIS, progress on implementation of the CPA, and respect for the ceasefire, and to provide an assessment and recommendations on measures UNMIS might take to further support elections and advance the peace process;
“3. Welcomes the military capability review conducted into UNMIS’ deployment, stresses the importance of appropriate and flexible deployment of UNMIS in order to address the most likely points of conflict, in particular in areas where civilians are under threat of violence, and requests regular reviews of deployment and implementation of recommendations to ensure that the force is best placed to support the implementation of the CPA;
“4. Stresses the importance of full, and expeditious implementation of all elements of the CPA, implementation of the Abyei Road Map, agreements on Darfur, and the October 2006 Eastern Sudan Peace Agreement, and calls upon all parties to respect and abide by their commitments to these agreements without delay;
“5. Welcomes the parties’ sustained commitment to work together in the Government of National Unity (GNU) and urges the continued cooperation of the National Congress Party (NCP) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM) in carrying out their responsibilities in further implementing the CPA;
“6. Stresses the critical role of the AEC in overseeing and reporting on implementation of the CPA; and urges all parties to cooperate fully with the AEC and implement its recommendations;
“7. Calls for all parties to cooperate with full and unrestricted access to UNMIS in monitoring and verification of the Abyei region, without prejudice to the final agreement on the Abyei boundaries, and urges UNMIS, consistent with its current mandate and within its means and capabilities, to consult with the parties, and to deploy, as appropriate, sufficient personnel to the Abyei region to improve conflict prevention efforts and security to the civilian population;
“8. Welcomes the parties agreement to submit the Abyei boundary dispute to the Abyei Arbitration Tribunal at the Permanent Court of Arbitration for resolution; calls upon the parties to abide by and implement the Tribunal’s decision on the final settlement of the Abyei boundary dispute; urges the parties to reach agreement on providing the funding of the Interim Administration in accordance with the CPA; and urges all parties to redeploy their military forces away from the disputed 1 January 1956 border;
“9. Welcomes the completion of the enumeration phase and technical analysis of the national census; expresses concern about the delay in announcing the results; and urges the parties to reach agreement expeditiously on the 2008 national census results in a way that does not increase tensions;
“10. Urges all Sudanese parties to continue to demonstrate their full commitment to the democratic process by preparing expeditiously for the conduct of peaceful, transparent, and credible elections in February 2010 as recommended by the NEC;
“11. Requests UNMIS, consistent with its mandate and within its current capabilities, to support the NEC in preparing for credible national elections, including through provision of assistance and advice, as required, with security preparations and coordinating UN election support efforts in close collaboration with UNDP, and ensuring that UNMIS’ efforts are complementary to those of the international community and the parties to the CPA, and urges the international community to provide technical and material assistance, including electoral observation capacity as requested by the GNU, to support credible elections;
“12. Recalls the CPA’s provision for referenda, including the parties’ responsibility to pursue efforts to make unity attractive, and reaffirming UNMIS’ support for these efforts, requests that UNMIS be prepared to provide assistance to the parties, if requested, to support preparations for a referendum in 2011;
“13. Expresses its concern for the health and welfare of the civilian populations in Sudan; calls upon the parties to the CPA and the communiqué signed between the United Nations and the GNU in Khartoum on 28 March 2007 to support, protect and facilitate all humanitarian operations and personnel in the Sudan; and urges the Government of Sudan to continue working with the United Nations to support the three-track approach delineated by the Secretary-General to ensure continuity of humanitarian assistance;
“14. Requests UNMIS to make full use of its current mandate and capabilities to provide security to the civilian population, humanitarian and development actors and UN personnel under imminent threat of violence as stated in resolution 1590 (2005), stresses that this mandate includes the protection of refugees, displaced persons and returnees, and emphasizes in particular the need for UNMIS to make full use of its current mandate and capabilities with regard to the activities of militias and armed groups such as the Lord’s Resistance Army in Sudan, as stated in resolution 1663 (2006);
“15. Deplores the persistent localized conflict and violence and its effect on civilians, especially within Southern Sudan, and the continuing potential for violence and calls upon UNMIS to strengthen its conflict management capacity by completing as soon as possible its integrated strategy to support local tribal conflict resolution mechanisms in order to maximize protection of civilians; welcomes the development of a comprehensive strategy on the protection of civilians and encourages UNMIS to continue and complete its work on the strategy in a timely manner; and calls again upon UNMIS, consistent with its current mandate and capabilities, to proactively conduct patrols in areas at high risk of localized conflict;
“16. Notes that conflict in one area of Sudan affects conflict in other areas of Sudan and in the region, and therefore urges UNMIS, consistent with its current mandate, to cooperate closely with all UN entities operating in the region, including the AU-UN Joint Mediation Support Team and other stakeholders, so that implementation of these bodies’ mandates supports the overall objective of peace in Sudan and the region;
“17. Requests UNMIS, acting within its current mandate and within its current means and capabilities, to provide technical and logistical support to the Technical ad hoc Border Committee, as requested, to help the parties urgently conclude the process of demarcation of the 1956 North/South border, in accordance with the CPA;
“18. Stresses the important role of the JIUs for the full implementation of the CPA, calls upon the Joint Defense Board to exercise command, control and management of the JIUs; requests UNMIS to explore ways to support Sudanese efforts to build JIU capabilities, and urges donors to offer support, both materiel and training, coordinated by UNMIS in consultation with the Joint Defense Board, to enable the full establishment and operational effectiveness of JIUs and JIPUs as soon as possible;
“19. Encourages UNMIS, consistent with its mandate, and within authorized levels of civilian police, to continue efforts to assist the parties to the CPA in promoting the rule of law, restructuring the police and corrections services throughout Sudan, assisting in the training of civilian police and corrections officers;
“20. Encourages the parties to undertake a prioritized roll-out of disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration (DDR) in all states, and requests UNMIS to work closely with the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) to assist in voluntary disarmament and weapons collection and destruction efforts in implementation of DDR under the CPA;
“21. Further urges donors to respond to calls for assistance to the DDR process, in particular the reintegration phase, and calls on donors to honour their obligations and pledges made at the Oslo Donors’ Conferences of 2005 and 2008;
“22. Requests UNMIS, consistent with its mandate and in coordination with the relevant parties and taking into account the need to pay particular attention to the protection, release and reintegration of children recruited to and participating with armed forces and armed groups, to increase its support for the National DDR Coordination Council and the Northern and Southern DDR Commissions with special emphasis on reintegrating such children with their families, and to monitor the reintegration process;
“23. Welcomes the continuing organized return of internally displaced persons and refugees to the Three Areas and southern Sudan, and encourages the promotion of efforts, including the provision of necessary resources to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and implementing partners, to ensure that such returns are voluntary and sustainable; and requests UNMIS, within its current mandate, capabilities and areas of deployment, to coordinate with partners to facilitate sustainable returns, including by helping to establish and maintain the necessary security conditions;
“24. Calls upon the GNU to cooperate fully with all the United Nations operations within its territory in the implementation of their mandates;
“25. Reiterates its concern over the restrictions and impediments placed on UNMIS personnel and materiel, and the adverse impact such restrictions and impediments have on UNMIS’ ability to perform its mandate effectively and on the ability of the humanitarian community to reach affected persons; and calls in this regard for all parties to cooperate fully with UNMIS and to facilitate the performance of its mandate, and to abide by their obligations under international humanitarian law;
“26. Stresses the importance of achievable and realistic targets against which the progress of UN peacekeeping operations can be measured; in this regard, requests the Secretary-General to develop benchmarks for measuring and tracking progress in the implementation of UNMIS mandate; further requests the Secretary-General to include in his next quarterly report an assessment of progress made against these benchmarks, as well as any consequent recommendations regarding UNMIS’ configuration;
“27. Underscores the importance that the military concept of operations and rules of engagement be regularly updated and be fully in line with the provisions of the UNMIS mandate under relevant Security Council resolutions, requests the Secretary-General to report on them to the Security Council and troop-contributing countries, and to provide the Security Council, with the same regularity as referred to in paragraph 2, with a specific update on the security situation;
“28. Requests the Secretary-General to continue to take the necessary measures to ensure full compliance by UNMIS with the United Nations zero-tolerance policy on sexual exploitation and abuse and to keep the Council fully informed, and urges troop-contributing countries to take appropriate preventive action including redeployment awareness training, and other action to ensure full accountability in cases of such conduct involving their personnel;
“29. Decides to remain actively seized of this matter.”
The Council adopted the text as Security Council resolution 1870 (2009).
SUSAN RICE ( United States) said that her delegation was very pleased that the Council had unanimously approved the renewal of the United Nations Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS). The positive vote was proof of the Council’s unwavering support for the work of the United Nations in Southern Sudan. It was also recognition that the full implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement was vital to bringing peace to the people of the Sudan. After years of fighting and depravation, the Sudanese people needed peace and stability.
At the same time, the United States was concerned by continuing strain in the relationship between Chad and the Sudan, she said, stressing that relations between the two countries affected myriad situations throughout the Sudan. The United States also remained concerned about negative impact of the Sudanese Government’s decision in mid-March to expel 13 aid organizations. That concern extended first and foremost to the people of the country impacted by that decision, particularly the people in Darfur.
She said there was no justification for the decision to expel the civil society groups, and that move simply put too many people at risk. The Sudan was responsible for its people and the United States urged the Government to take responsibility to provide for its people. Finally, she added that the United States supported the work of UNMIS, including its support of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, as well as its efforts to protect civilians and help the country achieve lasting peace.
JEAN-MAURICE RIPERT ( France) said his country fully backed UNMIS and was committed to the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, which had put an end to decades of conflict. France was also firmly committed to the peaceful solution to the crisis in Darfur and backed the three tiers described by the Secretary-General.
To meet the crisis situation created by the Government’s expulsion of numerous humanitarian organizations, he urged that Government to reverse the expulsion of the non-governmental organizations and to restore a conducive environment for humanitarian actions. The report noted the expulsions were likely to provoke a serious humanitarian crisis. He called on all parties to comply with international humanitarian law and to ensure that humanitarian assistance reached the populations that required it.
JORGE URBINA ( Costa Rica) welcomed the adoption of the resolution, which he said was ratifying the Council’s commitment to the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and restoration of peace in the Sudan. At the same time, he was concerned at the Sudanese Government’s decision to expel humanitarian relief and assistance agencies nearly two months ago. Indeed, Costa Rica would stress that humanitarian relief and assistance would need to be provided, without hindrance, in order for the Comprehensive Peace Agreement to take hold.
With that in mind, he said the resolution just adopted should reject the Sudanese Government’s action, because it would negatively impact the provision of such assistance, as well as implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. He stressed that Costa Rica would have liked the text of the resolution to explicitly mention the Government’s action, as it had at every stage, right up to the end of the negotiating process. However, the Council today had adopted a resolution that did not mention the issue.
Therefore, when the text referred to the events of 4 and 5 March 2009, Costa Rica would read it as having referred to the decision to expel those groups. Costa Rica would stress that humanitarian concerns were not linked to political concerns. The Government of the Sudan was bound by the commitments it had agreed under the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, as well as to its obligations under international law.
JOHN SAWERS ( United Kingdom) said the Council’s unity in support of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, which remained the bedrock for peace and security in the Sudan, was an important signal to the Government and the international community. The expulsion of 13 non-governmental organizations affected the delivery of humanitarian aid to the whole country. The first step for the Government would be to reverse the decision. The United Kingdom also welcomed the request in the resolution to the Secretary-General to develop benchmarks for progress. That request followed similar requests in other resolutions on peacekeeping operations and was an important step by the Council to increase effectiveness of those operations.
YUKIO TAKASU ( Japan) welcomed the adoption of the text and strongly hoped that it would promote the continuous implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. He, nevertheless, expressed deep concern at the Government’s decision last month to expel the main non-governmental organizations from the country. That decision had seriously impacted the provision of humanitarian assistance and might affect implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Japan would join the Secretary-General in calling for the Sudan to reverse that decision.
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