The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Kairat Umarov (Kazakhstan):
The members of the Security Council heard on 23 January 2018 a briefing by the Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Jean-Pierre Lacroix, on the situation in Mali.
The members of the Security Council welcomed the renewed commitment of the Government of Mali and the Plateforme and Coordination armed groups to the expeditious implementation of all of their remaining obligations under the Agreement on Peace and Reconciliation in Mali by the end of March 2018, through the adoption of a revised agreed-upon timetable during the last meeting of the Comité de Suivi de l’Accord held in Bamako on 15 and 16 January 2018. They welcomed the appointment of the Carter Center as the independent observer referred to in the Agreement, and called upon all parties to cooperate fully with it. They welcomed the establishment of an International Commission of Inquiry, in accordance with the Agreement and as requested by resolution 2364 (2017), and called upon all parties to cooperate fully with it.
The members of the Security Council expressed a shared sense of impatience regarding the persistent delays in the full implementation of key provisions of the Agreement. They underscored the pressing need to deliver tangible and visible peace dividends to the population in the north and other parts of Mali in order to preserve the relevance of the Agreement, as well as to prevent the gains achieved from being potentially reversed. They stressed the importance of making substantive progress ahead of the electoral cycles due to take place in Mali in 2018. They underlined that all parties to the Agreement share the primary responsibility for making steadfast progress in its implementation.
The members of the Security Council stressed in this context the importance of taking immediate and concrete action to fully and expeditiously deliver on key provisions of the Agreement, in particular through: progress in the decentralization process, including through the holding of appropriate consultations between the parties aimed at reviewing and strengthening consensus on existing legislation and through the adoption of legislation establishing a regional territorial police force; the operationalization of the interim administrations in the north of Mali, including through the allocation of the necessary human, technical and financial resources to perform their missions; progress in the cantonment and disarmament, demobilization and reintegration processes, including through the definition of adequate eligibility criteria and reintegration quotas and through the submission of finalized lists of candidates, as well as progress in the security sector reform, with a view to the progressive redeployment of the reconstituted armed and security forces in Mali; the establishment of the Operational Coordination Mechanism in Kidal and Timbuktu; and ensuring full and equal participation of women.
The members of the Security Council recalled that actions taken that obstruct, or that obstruct by prolonged delay, or that threaten the implementation of the Agreement, now constitute a basis for sanctions designations pursuant to resolution 2374 (2017), among other designation criteria. They took note of the establishment of the Sanctions Committee and of the Panel of Experts established pursuant to resolution 2374 (2017), and called upon all actors to cooperate fully with them. They expressed their intention to follow the situation closely and to respond with appropriate steps should the parties not implement the commitments made in the timetable referred to above.
The members of the Security Council urged all parties, as well as international forces present in Mali, to comply with their obligations under applicable international law and to bring an end to all human rights violations and abuses. They encouraged the Government of Mali to continue its efforts to combat impunity, with the support of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA). They encouraged the Government of Mali to work with all relevant actors on draft legislation aimed at supporting national reconciliation, as announced by President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta.
The members of the Security Council reiterated their full support to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Mali and Head of MINUSMA, Mahamat Saleh Annadif, the international mediation team led by Algeria, MINUSMA and the French forces that support it. They emphasized the central role the Special Representative of the Secretary-General should continue to play to support and oversee the implementation of the Agreement by the Government of Mali and the Plateforme and Coordination armed groups. They called on all members of the Comité de suivi de l’Accord and other relevant international partners to show renewed support to the implementation of the Agreement.
The members of the Security Council reaffirmed their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Mali. They underlined that lasting peace and security in the Sahel region will not be achieved without full, effective and inclusive implementation of the Agreement.