Letter dated 20 December 2012 from the Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Security Council
India held the presidency of the Security Council for the month of November 2012. An assessment of the work of the Council, prepared under my supervision in consultation with the other members of the Council, is enclosed (see annex).
I should be grateful if the present letter and its annex could be issued as a document of the Security Council.
(Signed) H. S. Puri
Annex to the letter dated 20 December 2012 from the Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Security Council
Assessment of the work of the Security Council during the presidency of India (November 2012)
1. During November 2012, under the presidency of the Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations, Ambassador H. S. Puri, the Security Council held 21 informal consultations of the whole and 24 official meetings, one of which was held in private.
2. During the month, the Council adopted six resolutions (two each on Somalia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and one each on the Sudan/South Sudan (Abyei) and Bosnia-Herzegovina) and two presidential statements (on piracy and Sierra Leone), and issued two press statements (on the Middle East and the Democratic Republic of the Congo).
3. The Council also adopted the annual report of the Security Council to the General Assembly (A/67/2 (Supp.)) on 8 November, which the President of the Council submitted to the General Assembly on 15 November.
Middle East, including the Palestinian question
35. Between 14 and 21 November, the Security Council held a number of meetings, including one private meeting on 14 November and a briefing by the Secretary-General on 21 November, in order to discuss the crisis in the Gaza Strip and Israel. All Council members supported the cessation of hostilities. Some members said that Israel was exercising its right to self-defence in the face of rocket attacks from Gaza. Others criticized the disproportionate use of force by Israel. The Council’s consideration of the crisis ended with a press statement on 21 November, in which the members of the Council welcomed the ceasefire agreement in order to bring about a sustainable and durable cessation of hostilities that had been affecting the Gaza Strip and Israel. They called on the parties to uphold the agreement and to act seriously to implement its provisions in good faith. While reaffirming the need for the people of Israel and the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip to live without fear, the members called on the international community to contribute to improving the living conditions of the people in the Gaza Strip, notably through providing additional emergency aid through appropriate established channels. They also stressed the urgency of the restoration of calm in full and reiterated the importance of achieving a comprehensive peace based on the vision of a region where two democratic States, Israel and Palestine, live side by side in peace within secure and recognized borders.
36. On 27 November, the Council held the monthly briefing on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question. The Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, said that the recent developments — the recent disturbing cycle of violence in Gaza and Israel and a dangerous escalation that had concluded with the Egyptian-brokered ceasefire agreement on 21 November, and the Palestinians’ intention to approach the General Assembly to seek the status of non-member observer State — underscore that the status quo is unsustainable and that it is all the more vital to identify a way ahead to urgently put the peace process back on track. The Special Coordinator reiterated his warning about the risks of prolonged stalemate in the peace process for the two-State solution and the viability of the Palestinian Authority. Unfortunately, the effort to revive the peace process continued to be undermined by actions on the ground, including continued settlement activity, settler violence and clashes between Palestinians and Israeli security forces.
37. With respect to the Syrian Arab Republic, the Special Coordinator noted that as a consequence of the 21-month internal conflict, the situation in the area of operations of the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) remained volatile, and armed clashes between the Syrian Arab Armed Forces and armed members of the opposition took place daily inside the area of separation. He added that the situation in Lebanon also remained vulnerable to the ongoing conflict in the Syrian Arab Republic.
38. Underscoring their support for the two-State solution, Council members talked of their efforts for the resumption of direct talks. They also emphasized that all concerned should fully respect the political independence, sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Lebanon. Divergent views were expressed on the situation in the Syrian Arab Republic.
Document Type: Assessment, Letter
Document Sources: Security Council, United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process (UNSCO)
Subject: Armed conflict, Gaza Strip, Middle East situation, Palestine question, Peace process, Peacekeeping, Settlements, Situation in Lebanon, Statehood-related
Publication Date: 30/11/2012