Strengthening the principles of international law and the protection of civilians in armed conflict would be two of the major themes that the Security Council would address in the coming month, Joanna Wronecka (Poland), Council President for May, said today as she laid out the organ’s monthly programme of work at a Headquarters press briefing.
Ms. Wronecka said that, on 17 May, President Andrzej Duda of Poland was expected to preside over an open debate on the Security Council’s role in upholding international law, adding that a ministerial-level open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict was scheduled for 22 May. A briefing on the Council’s recent mission to Myanmar and Bangladesh was planned for 14 May, she added.
The Council would also conduct three meetings on the situation in Syria throughout the month, she continued. It would discuss the political and humanitarian situations on 16 May and 29 May, respectively, and address chemical weapons in consultations on 7 May.
Ms. Wronecka said the annual briefing by senior military commanders of three peacekeeping operations was scheduled for 9 May. Force commanders of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA), African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) and the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) would all be present.
Also during May, she said, the Council was expected to renew the mandate of the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) on 14 May, and that of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) on 29 May, in addition to renewing sanctions on South Sudan.
The Council President said that a number of briefings related to Libya also appeared on the programme, including one by the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Prosecutor, on 9 May. Discussions on the work of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) and the Libya sanctions regime were slated for 21 May, she added.
Ms. Wronecka went on to say that, on 15 May, the Council would receive its annual briefing by the Chairs of the three counter-terrorism subsidiary bodies: the 1267/1989/2253 Committee, the 1373 Committee and the 1540 Committee.
She said the Council would hold a debate on Bosnia and Herzegovina on 8 May, and hear its quarterly briefing on the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) on 14 May.
A number of other briefings related to United Nations activities in Africa were also planned, she continued. They would include the work of UNMISS and the South Sudan sanctions regime on 8 May, UNAMID on 10 May, United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) on 15 May and the United Nations Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Guinea-Bissau (UNIOGBIS) on 16 May. Later in the month, the Council would hear briefings on the activities of the joint force of the Group of Five for the Sahel on 23 May, and on the political situation in Burundi on 24 May.
The Council President said that additional briefings were scheduled for 28 May, on the situation in Ukraine, and on the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI). The sanctions on Democratic People’s Republic of Korea would be discussed in consultations on 30 May, she added.
Asked what action the Council was expected to take following its recent mission to Bangladesh and Myanmar, during which time members spoke with refugees, high-level political and military authorities, United Nations representatives and members of civil society, Ms. Wronecka said members were united and committed to alleviating the suffering they had witnessed. She went on to say that she expected a presidential statement to be adopted and that discussions on additional steps were ongoing.
Questioned as to whether she anticipated other items to be added to the programme as the month progressed, she recalled that additional items were continuously added to the programme throughout April, noting that the Council had met for 73 hours during that month — a new record. She said the Council was prepared to react to a number of developing situations, including those in the Middle East and the Korean Peninsula.
For the full programme of work, please see www.un.org/en/sc/programme/.