Outcome of Votes on MINUSCA, UNMISS & AMISOM - Security Council Open VTC

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12-Mar-2021 00:09:45
Security Council increases size of Central African Republic stabilization mission, adopting resolution 2566 (2021) by 14 votes in favour, with 1 abstention.

Security Council extends mandate of United Nations Mission in South Sudan, unanimously adopting resolution 2567 (2021).

Security Council reauthorizes African Union Mission in Somalia, unanimously adopting resolution 2568 (2021).

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The Security Council decided today to increase the authorized size of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) to enhance its ability to perform its priority mandated tasks “in the current evolving context”.

By a vote of 14 in favour to none against, with one abstention, it adopted resolution 2566 (2021) under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, through which it decided to increase the Mission’s military component by 2,750, and its police component by 940, from the current levels authorized in resolution 2552 (2020).

Through the text, the 15-member organ stressed that the reinforcements would enable MINSUCA to focus on the protection of civilians and facilitation of humanitarian access. They will also enhance the Mission’s capacity to prevent and reverse a deterioration of the security situation while creating space for the political process in the Central African Republic to advance.

The Council further stressed that these new capabilities are not a substitute for the national authorities’ primary responsibility to advance the peace process and protect the population. It noted that the reinforcements should be sequenced through a phased approach and requested the Secretary-General to include, in his report of 11 October 2021, a proposal on MINUSCA’s overall force configuration.

Through resolution 2552 (2020), which extended MINSUCA’s mandate to 15 November 2021, the Council decided that the Mission shall continue to comprise up to 11,650 military personnel, 2,080 police personnel and 108 corrections officers.

The Council most recently debated the situation in the Central African Republic during a videoconference meeting on 24 February 2021. (See Press Release SC/14447.)

For further details please see SOURCE below.

Extending the mandate of the United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS) until 15 March 2022, the Security Council demanded today that all parties to the conflict in that country and other armed actors immediately stop fighting and engage in political dialogue, in accordance with the peace agreement signed in 2018.

Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations, the Council unanimously adopted resolution 2567 (2021), by which it decided that the Mission’s mandate is designed to advance a three-year strategic vision to prevent a return to civil war, build a durable peace, and support inclusive and accountable governance — and free, fair and peaceful elections — in line with the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan.

By terms of the 13-page resolution, the 15-member Council stated that the mandate shall include the protection of civilians under threat of physical violence, with specific protection for women and children. UNMISS shall also deter violence against civilians, especially through proactive deployment and active patrolling, with particular attention to internally displaced persons and refugees in UNMISS protection sites.

The mandate shall also include the creation of conditions that are conducive to the delivery of humanitarian assistance, supporting implementation of the Revitalized Agreement and the South Sudan peace process, as well as monitoring, investigating and reporting on violations of international humanitarian law and violations and abuses of human rights.

Also by the text, the Council decided to maintain the Mission’s overall force levels at a ceiling of 17,000 troops and 2,101 police, including 88 corrections officers. However, it expressed its readiness to consider adjusting those levels on the basis of security conditions on the ground and implementation of priority measures by the Government of South Sudan and all relevant actors.

Those priority measures, to be put in place before the Mission’s current mandate expires, include: providing security to re-designated protection-of-civilian sites in a manner consistent with international human rights law and international humanitarian law; ending all obstructions that hamper the Mission’s ability to monitor and investigate human rights violations and abuses; and initiating a permanent constitution-making process.

Today’s resolution goes on to demand that all parties to the conflict immediately cease all forms of violence, human rights violations and abuses, and violations of international humanitarian law, including rape and other forms of sexual and gender-based violence, and to hold those responsible to account. It also demands that all parties and other armed actors prevent further acts of sexual violence.

By further terms, the text demands that all parties allow the rapid, safe and unhindered access of relief personnel, equipment and supplies — and the timely delivery of humanitarian assistance — to all those in need.

The Council expressed its intention to consider all appropriate measures against those whose actions undermine peace, stability and security, and demanded that all Member States comply with their obligations to prevent the supply, sale or transfer of arms and related materiel, as set out in previous resolutions.

It went on to encourage continued firm engagement by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the African Union Peace and Security Council, and countries in the region to find a durable solution to South Sudan’s peace and security challenges, while calling upon the international community to scale up its humanitarian response.

Finally, the Council requested that the Secretary-General provide by 15 July 2021 a needs assessment for creating an enabling environment for elections, in addition to comprehensive reports every 90 days on implementation of the UNMISS mandate.

For further details please see SOURCE below.

Niger Expresses Regret over Draft’s Processing, Demands Attention to Positions of Host Country, African Union, Troop Contributors

The Security Council announced today its adoption of a resolution reauthorizing the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) until 31 December and maintaining its overall 19,626 uniformed personnel level ahead of the phased handover of responsibilities to Somali security forces, planned for later in 2021.

Resolution 2568 (2021) — a comprehensive text adopted unanimously under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations — sets out AMISOM’s functions, objectives and strategic objectives, as well as requests for logistical and financial support, terms for the Federal Government of Somalia and reporting requirements for the African Union.

Recognizing the role of the African Union Peace and Security Council, the Council took note of its request that the African Union Commission finalize its independent assessment and urged it to mandate, in May 2021, an AMISOM that “supports and enables” the implementation of the Somalia Transition Plan, implementing the necessary steps to ensure continued delivery of support to Somali security efforts in 2022.

More broadly, the Council underlined the need for Somalia and its partners to take a “coordinated and cohesive” approach towards Somali-led political and security reforms to ensure the transition of security responsibilities agreed by the Somali authorities, the Somali security forces, and AMISOM from the outset.

The Council further requested that the African Union and the Federal Government conduct a joint update of AMISOM’s Concept of Operations, in accordance with the Somalia Transition Plan until the end of 2023 — in close collaboration with the federal member states, the United Nations and international partners — to be presented to the Security Council no later than the end of August 2021.

Among other functions, AMISOM will be authorized to realign its sectors with the boundaries of federal member states by the end of 2021 and establish a joint planning headquarters between AMISOM and the Somali security forces in each sector/federal member state. It will also help the national security forces become more offensive as a quick reaction force by the end of August 2021.

In terms of logistics, the Council requested that the Secretary-General continue to provide a logistical support package, through the United Nations Support Office in Somalia (UNSOS), for the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), AMISOM uniformed personnel and 70 AMISOM civilians — in accordance with resolution 2245 (2015) — as well as support to 13,900 Somali security forces. It also requested that the Secretary-General provide technical and expert advice to the African Union on the planning, deployment and strategic management of AMISOM.

The Council called upon the Federal Government of Somalia and the federal member states to organize free, fair, credible and inclusive elections, in line with the 17 September 2020 agreement and without further delay, and to finalize political agreement to that end.

Following the announcement, the representative of Niger spoke for Kenya, Tunisia and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines — known informally as the “A3+1” — explaining that his delegation voted in favour of the text due to the overarching need for unity of purpose within the Council and to demonstrate solidarity with those serving in AMISOM. However, he expressed deep regret about the manner in which the process was conducted, emphasizing that the A3+1 position was guided by its recognition of the African Union as a key stakeholder and by the Mission’s crucial actions taken at the cost of great loss of life on the part of troop-contributing countries. “The African Union, its role and mandate must be given due regard,” he stressed, pointing out that his delegation had not been properly consulted.

Noting that the draft was received only one day before the start of negotiations, he explained that elements of it had nonetheless been shared and discussed extensively among other parties long before the present time. Whereas today’s document is much improved, thanks to Niger’s input — which was based on the February communiqué by the African Union Peace and Security Council — he expressed disappointment that some A3+1 proposals were rejected without any convincing explanation. Among them was the inclusion of a reference to United Nations assessed contributions as a possibility to be examined in relation to enhancing the predictability and sustainability of AMISOM’s financing, despite the absence of reservations on the proposal during two rounds of negotiations.

Moreover, he continued, the independent assessment report, circulated in January 2021, stated that a reconfigured AMISOM is the best option for supporting Somalia, and that the best way to fund the Mission would be through United Nations assessed contributions. As stated by the African Union Peace and Security Council, the African Union must play a leadership role in determining the future of AMISOM throughout Somalia’s transition, he said, declaring: “The Security Council must listen more intently to the host country, the African Union and troop-contributing countries.” It must also rethink the penholder system, which is outmoded and increasingly at odds with managing peace and security, he emphasized.

For further details please see SOURCE below.
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