Expert Group’s Efforts to Help Disrupt Al-Shabaab’s Finances Also Recognized
The Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 751 (1992), concerning Somalia, held its first virtual meeting of 2021 with its Panel of Experts on 29 January to learn about its work programme for the year.
Updating the Council on the Committee’s work from 29 October 2020 to 25 February 2021, Ireland’s representative, speaking in her capacity as Committee Chair during a videoconference meeting, recalled that today’s update marks her first briefing since the adoption of resolution 2551 (2020) on 12 November 2020. Under that text, the Council renewed the partial lifting of the arms embargo and the humanitarian exemption to the assets freeze, without subjecting them to an end date.
In addition, the Council — under resolution 2551 (2020) — eased some of the requirements of the partial lifting, she recalled, reaffirmed the improvised explosive device components ban and added to the list of components, as well as renewed the mandate of the Panel of Experts on Somalia until 15 December 2021. It requested the Panel to continue exchanging information about Al-Shabaab’s finances with the Federal Government of Somalia and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), asking them to continue to work with stakeholders to develop a plan to disrupt the extremist group’s finances.
Following the adoption of resolution 2551 (2020), six Panel members were appointed by the Secretary-General on 11 December 2020, she affirmed.
Recalling that in 2020 the Panel had focused on rebuilding a positive working relationship with the Federal Government of Somalia, the Coordinator informed that the Panel remained engaged with the Federal Government in projects both in Mogadishu and in federal member states. Several Committee members commended the progress in the relationship between the Panel and the Federal Government of Somalia, expressing hope it would be strengthened. The Committee also expressed appreciation for the Panel’s work towards disrupting Al-Shabaab’s finances.
During the reporting period, the Committee received two monthly updates from the Panel of Experts mandated by resolution 2498 (2019), she continued, as well as two letters from Member States — one pertaining to arms embargo exemption issues, to which the Committee responded, and the other concerning the Panel’s final report submitted under its previous mandate, on which consideration is still ongoing.
She went on to summarize statistics related to arms embargo exemption requests and notifications, noting that prior to the adoption of resolution 2551 (2020), the Committee received both an advance delivery notification and a post-delivery notification from the Federal Government of Somalia, pursuant to resolution 2498 (2019).
She also explained that, following the adoption of resolution 2551 (2020), the Committee approved an exemption request, received five advance notifications, and one post-delivery notification — all from the Federal Government of Somalia, pursuant to 10, 11, 13 and 16 of the same resolution. The Committee also received eight advance delivery notifications from supplying Member States or international organizations in accordance with resolution 2551 (2020).
Finally, she said the Committee received a copy of the Federal Government’s biannual report, pursuant to resolution 2551 (2020), on the structure, composition, strength and disposition of its security forces, and the status of regional and militia forces.