The Security Council renewed until 31 May 2021 the arms embargo and targeted sanctions imposed on South Sudan, in a videoconference meeting* on 29 May, while extending the mandate of the Panel of Experts tasked with overseeing those measures until 1 July 2021.
Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, the Council adopted resolution 2521 (2020) by a vote of 12 in favour to none against, with 3 abstentions (China, Russian Federation, South Africa), deciding to renew for 12 months the arms embargo imposed by paragraph 4 of resolution 2428 (2018), while reaffirming the provisions of paragraph 5 of the same resolution.
[Security Council resolutions are currently adopted through a written procedure vote under temporary, extraordinary and provisional measures implemented in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as set out in a letter (document S/2020/253) by its President for March (China).]
Members also decided to review measures renewed in paragraph 3 of that text in light of the progress made in implementing the 2018 Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan, as well as adherence to the Agreement on Cessation of Hostilities, Protection of Civilians and Humanitarian Access and the Revitalized Agreement’s ceasefire provisions.
In that regard, Council members decided to carry out a midterm review of the paragraph 3 stipulations, no later than 15 December 2020. They expressed their readiness to consider adjusting the measures — including by modifying, suspending, lifting or strengthening them in response to the situation — and requested that the Secretariat submit a report by 31 October 2020, assessing the role of the arms embargo in facilitating implementation of the Revitalized Agreement, while articulating options for the elaboration of benchmarks to assess the embargo.
With regard to the targeted travel and financial measures previously imposed, the Council decided to renew, until 31 May 2021, the contents of paragraphs 9 and 12 of resolution 2206 (2015). It reaffirmed the provisions of paragraphs 10, 11, 13, 14 and 15 of that resolution, as well as paragraphs 13, 14, 15 and 16 of resolution 2428 (2018).
Members decided to review the particular measures renewed in paragraph 11 in light of progress made towards implementing all provisions of the Revitalized Agreement related to human rights violations and abuses. They also decided to carry out a midterm review thereof, no later than 15 December while again expressing their readiness to consider adjusting the paragraph 11 measures in response to the situation.
Regarding the Panel of Experts overseeing the sanctions imposed on South Sudan, the Council members decided to extend its mandate — the mandate of the Panel of Experts as set out in paragraph 19 of resolution 2428 (2018) — until 1 July 2021.
In addition, the Council expressed its deep concern over continued fighting in South Sudan, condemning violations of the Revitalized Agreement and the Agreement on Cessation of Hostilities, Protection of Civilians and Humanitarian Access. Council members went on to urge South Sudan’s leaders to finalize the formation of the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity, while allowing full, safe and unhindered humanitarian access to all those in need.
* Based on information received from the Security Council Affairs Division.