12 December 2019
8684th Meeting (PM)

Chair of Security Council Sanctions Committee Applauds Sudan’s New Political Path, Improvements in Darfur, while Noting Conflict’s Causes Yet to Be Addressed

Permanent Representative Cites Nationwide Ceasefire, Government’s Peace Talks with Armed Groups as Signs of Progress

The Chair of the Security Council’s Sudan sanctions committee today described a much-improved security situation in Darfur — and a positive political trajectory across the country — while outlining efforts to better explain the scope and purpose of the sanctions in place against the country.

Joanna Wronecka (Poland), speaking in her capacity as Chair of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1591 (2005) concerning Sudan, recalled that she and other Committee members visited Khartoum and Darfur from 11 to 14 November.  The purpose of the visit was to obtain first-hand accounts on the implementation of measures imposed in resolutions 1591 (2005) and 1845 (2010), as updated in resolution 2035 (2012).  Describing meetings with Sudanese officials, United Nations entities, internally displaced persons, civil society leaders and youth groups, she said the United Nations sanctions regime continues to be largely confused with other bilateral measures — either past or present — and cited as a main impediment to Darfur’s development and the delivery of basic services.

“During my visit, I made every effort to explain the scope and purpose of the targeted measures […] as well as the difference between United Nations sanctions and bilateral measures,” she said.  Emphasizing that the situation in Darfur has improved since her visit in 2018, she said security conditions have largely normalized, with the exception of rebel groups’ presence in limited areas of Jebel Marra.  However, many challenges remain in the humanitarian and human rights arenas and the causes of the conflict have yet to be addressed.  Citing several positive steps in Sudan’s peace process, she said there is now a clear expectation from Darfuri civil society and representatives of internally displaced persons to be included in the process.  “We, as the Committee and the Council, need to do our utmost to help foster this hope and build on it,” she said.

Omer Mohamed Ahmed Siddig (Sudan) then underlined the Government’s commitment to cooperation with United Nations entities, including the Group of Experts and the Sanctions Committee.  He expressed hope that the Committee’s visit will provide a “snapshot of the situation on the ground”, leading to tangible, evidence-based decisions aimed at easing the sanctions and improving Sudan’s overall situation.  “The Sudan you know today is no longer the Sudan you knew [in 2005],” he stressed, noting that the Government launched a nationwide ceasefire and is engaged in peace talks with a range of armed groups.  He went on to recall that the Council adopted resolution 2455 (2019), thereby renewing the mandate of the Group of Experts for one year — until February 2020 — and that it also expressed an intention to review the matter against key benchmarks at that time.

The meeting began at 3:05 p.m. and ended at 3:16 p.m.

For information media. Not an official record.