UN / LIBERIA

19-Apr-2018 00:02:57
At the Security Council’s final meeting on Liberia, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Alexander Zouev said today marked a “historic milestone” for the country after 25 years of constant presence on the Council’s agenda. UNIFEED
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STORY: UN / LIBERIA
TRT: 02:57
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 19 APRIL 2018, NEW YORK CITY
SHOTLIST
FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, UNHQ exterior

19 APRIL 2018, NEW YORK CITY

2. SOUNDBITE (English) Alexander Zouev, Assistant Secretary-General, Department of Peacekeeping Operations, United Nations:
“Today marks a historic milestone for Liberia, a founding member of the United Nations. For nearly 25 years, the situation in Liberia was so concerning that it has been a constant presence on this Council's agenda. But the country has turned an important corner.”
3. Med shot, Liberia representative
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Alexander Zouev, Assistant Secretary-General, Department of Peacekeeping Operations, United Nations:
“Now, with the people and Government of Liberia, lies the important work of continuing to build a nation - a unified, reconciled nation with an accountable government committed to addressing corruption within its ranks, a nation where all citizens share the benefits of Liberia's abundant natural and human resources. A nation fully responsible for its own destiny, with institutions and a Government providing basic guarantees - of security, of protection, of services - to all its citizens.”
5. Wide shot, Security Council
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Chid Liberty, Chief Executive Officer, Liberty and Justice:
“As the United Nations Mission in Liberia officially ended its function in March, I can say that Liberia is truly a post-conflict success story. Mission accomplished. But I would be remised to let this mission end here. As we look to the future, Liberia now more than ever needs to strengthen our private sector we have a young population that needs to be educated, employed, and engaged in the democratic process. I hope we can all agree that to continue the spirit of the mission means we all need to find ways to invest in Liberia’s youth.”
7. Med shot, representatives
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Israel Choko Davies, Chargé d’Affaires of the Permanent Mission of Liberia to the United Nations:
“Do we close the chapter today without challenges? My response to this question is an emphatic no. Challenges still loom; decentralization, land ownership and disputes, corruption, violence against women and girls, a struggling economy, and poor infrastructure amongst others. We can assure you, that these will remain at the front burner of the current administration. Yet still, for us to successfully surmount these challenges, Liberia will need your continued and unflinching support, not just from the traditional donors, but from everyone.”
9. Med shot, representatives
10. SOUNDBITE (English) Israel Choko Davies, Chargé d’Affaires of the Permanent Mission of Liberia to the United Nations:
“Even during our darkest moments and difficult days, and in our deepest despair, we still believed that Liberia would rise again, and today Liberia is rising. The briefing of Mr. Chid Liberty is an attestation. Liberia, also, once a beneficiary of a peacekeeping mission is now a contributing nation to a peacekeeping mission in Mali."
11. Wide shot, Security Council
STORYLINE
At the Security Council’s final meeting on Liberia, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Alexander Zouev said today marked a “historic milestone” for the country after 25 years of constant presence on the Council’s agenda.

Addressing the Council today (19 Apr), Zouev said the country which had faced a brutal 14-year civil war has turned “an important corner” with the UN peacekeeping mission (UNMIL) ending on 30 March. He added, “Now, with the people and Government of Liberia, lies the important work of continuing to build a nation - a unified, reconciled nation with an accountable government committed to addressing corruption within its ranks, a nation where all citizens share the benefits of Liberia's abundant natural and human resources; a nation fully responsible for its own destiny, with institutions and a Government providing basic guarantees - of security, of protection, of services - to all its citizens.”

Liberty and Justice CEO Chid Liberty said the international community’s investments in a peaceful Liberia were not made in vain.

SOUNDBITE (English) Chid Liberty, Chief Executive Officer, Liberty and Justice:
“As the United Nations Mission in Liberia officially ended its function in March, I can say that Liberia is truly a post-conflict success story. Mission accomplished. But I would be remised to let this mission end here. As we look to the future, Liberia now more than ever needs to strengthen our private sector we have a young population that needs to be educated, employed, and engaged in the democratic process. I hope we can all agree that to continue the spirit of the mission means we all need to find ways to invest in Liberia’s youth.”

“Liberty and Justice” is a fair-trade company founded by Liberty, a Liberian-American whose family moved to the United States when he was five years old to seek refuge from the deteriorating political situation in Liberia.

Israel Davies, Chargé d’Affaires of the Liberian Mission to the UN, said the meeting marked a moment of pride and joy for Liberians. He said challenges “still loom” in the country including “decentralization, land ownership and disputes, corruption, violence against women and girls, a struggling economy, and poor infrastructure amongst others” but assured the Council that the issues would remain “at the front burner of the current administration.” He added that to successfully address its challenges, Liberia would need the continued “unflinching” support of the international community.

Davies paid tribute to all those who lost their lives in the cause of peace in Liberia, including 202 peacekeepers. He said, “Even during our darkest moments and difficult days, and in our deepest despair, we still believed that Liberia would rise again, and today Liberia has risen." The Liberian representative said Liberia, which was once a beneficiary of a peacekeeping mission “is now a contributing nation to a peacekeeping mission in Mali."
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