Security Council 6521st Meeting (PM)
The Security Council expressed strong support today for efforts to further the peace processes in South Sudan and Darfur, while reiterating deep concern about obstacles and continuing violence in both regions and encouraging all parties concerned to engage with the United Nations on the Organization’s future presence in Sudan.
In a statement read out by Néstor Osorio (Colombia), its President for April, the Council noted that the 9 July conclusion of the interim period of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement between the North and South was imminent, and urged the parties, meeting at the highest levels necessary, to reach agreement on outstanding issues and future arrangements. It was their responsibility to reach agreement on the disputed Abyei area, while acknowledging the July court ruling defining the borders there.
Welcoming progress towards gubernatorial and state assembly elections in Blue Nile and South Kordofan states, the Council underscored the need to keep the proceedings peaceful, urging both parties to reach an agreement on the future of tens of thousands of troops of the Sudan’s People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), while also determining that of Southerners currently serving in the Sudan Armed Forces.
The Council also called on the leaders of the Government of Southern Sudan and the SPLA to find solutions and restore calm in Jonglei, Upper Nile and Unity States. It underlined the need for the parties to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement to promote calm in all areas, by assuring people of all nationalities that their rights would be respected. The Council reiterated in the strongest terms that any obstruction to the free movement of the United Nations Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS), or support to proxy militias was unacceptable.
Turning to Darfur, the Council reiterated its deep concern over the serious increase in violence in the region, including attacks by rebel groups, bombardments by Government forces and the displacement of civilians. Demanding a cessation of hostilities, it also urged a thorough investigation of the 5 April killing of a peacekeeper of the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID), and full access by UNAMID and humanitarian workers throughout Darfur, as necessary.
Reaffirming its support for the Darfur peace process, the Council strongly urged all rebel movements remaining outside it to join without delay or conditions. It also urged the parties to the Doha peace negotiations quickly to agree to a ceasefire and reach a political accord by making the necessary concessions. Expressing support for the Darfur-based political process and the upcoming All Darfur Stakeholders Conference in Doha, it said it should be fully representative, with increased participation by women.
The Council called on the Government and armed movements to contribute to the creation of an enabling environment for the Darfur peace process, in collaboration with UNAMID, by allowing full freedom of speech and open consultations without intimidation. In that context, it called on the Government to fulfil its commitment to lift the state of emergency in the region, release all political detainees, allow free expression, and ensure accountability for serious violations of human rights and humanitarian law.
The meeting, which took place during a suspension of the debate on the Middle East, began at 3:20 p.m. and ended at 3:30 p.m.
The full text of Presidential Statement S/PRST/2011/8 reads as follows:
“The Security Council reaffirms its support for the continued negotiations between the parties to the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), including under the auspices of the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) and its chair President Thabo Mbeki. Noting that the conclusion of the CPA Interim Period on 9 July is soon approaching, the Council urges the parties, meeting at the highest level, as necessary, to reach agreement on outstanding CPA issues and post-CPA arrangements. The Council also encourages the parties to engage with the United Nations on the future of the UN presence in Sudan.
“The Security Council reiterates its deep concern over increased tensions, violence, and displacement in the Abyei Area. The Council calls on both parties to implement and adhere to recent security agreements by withdrawing from the Abyei Area all forces other than the Joint Integrated Units and Joint Integrated Police Units allowed under those agreements and to urgently reach an agreement on Abyei’s post-CPA status. The Council affirms that it is the responsibility of the CPA parties, including during their negotiations under the auspices of the AUHIP and its chair President Thabo Mbeki, to reach agreement on the status of Abyei. In this regard, the Council acknowledges the July 2009 ruling by The Hague’s Permanent Court of Arbitration, which defines the borders of Abyei.
“The Security Council welcomes the start of the popular consultation process in Blue Nile State and the rescheduled May 2-4 gubernatorial and state assembly elections in Southern Kordofan State. The Council expresses its concern about recent violence in Southern Kordofan, and underscores the responsibility of all parties to avoid inflammatory rhetoric and to ensure peaceful and credible elections. The Council also stresses the importance of inclusive, timely, and credible popular consultations processes, in accordance with the CPA. The Council urges both parties to reach a security agreement regarding the future of the tens of thousands of troops from the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) from Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile States. The Council also urges the parties to reach agreement on security arrangements and to determine the future status of Southerners currently serving in the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF).
“The Security Council is deeply concerned about recent violence between the SPLA and local militias, specifically in Jonglei, Upper Nile, and Unity States. The Council calls on the leaders of the Government of Southern Sudan and the SPLA to find peaceful solutions to the violence, prevent further clashes, and restore calm.
“The Council underlines the need for the CPA parties to promote calm, including by providing immediate and ongoing reassurance to people of all nationalities in Sudan, including Southerners in the North and Northerners in the South, that their rights, safety and property will be respected. The Council urges the CPA parties to respect their obligations in this regard.
“The Council reiterates in the strongest terms that any obstruction to freedom of movement of the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) is unacceptable and that UNMIS requires full and unfettered access throughout the mission area.
“The Security Council will not tolerate any support to proxy militias by either party to the CPA.
“The Security Council reiterates its deep concern over the serious increase in violence and insecurity in Darfur, including ceasefire violations, restrictions on access to vulnerable populations throughout Darfur by UNAMID and the humanitarian community, attacks by rebel groups, aerial bombardment by the Sudanese Armed Forces, and the ongoing displacement of civilians. The Council expresses its deep condolences to the family of the peacekeeper killed on April 5 and urges the UN-AU Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) and the Government of Sudan to conduct a full and thorough investigation into the incident.
“The Security Council reaffirms its support for UNAMID, including the increasingly full implementation of itsChapter VII mandate to deliver its core tasks to protect civilians and assure humanitarian access, as defined in Resolution 1769 (2007), and recalls the priority given to its efforts in support of the AU-UN led political process for Darfur. The Council demands that the Government of Sudan and the armed movements cease hostilities and ensure full and unhindered access, by land and by air, for UNAMID throughout the mission area and allow humanitarian workers to provide assistance to all populations in need. The Council notes the statement made by the Permanent Representative of Sudan to the United Nations Security Council on April 20, 2011, that his government would issue all outstanding 1,117 visas for UNAMID personnel, and urgently calls on the Government of Sudan to do so.
“The Security Council reaffirms its support for the AU-UN led peace process for Darfur, hosted by the State of Qatar, and the work of Joint Chief Mediator Djibril Bassole. The Council further reaffirms its support for the principles guiding the negotiations. The Council strongly urges all other rebel movements to join the peace process without further delay or preconditions. The Council urges the parties in Doha to make the necessary concessions to quickly reach a ceasefire and political agreement and looks forward to the outcome of the upcoming All-Darfur Stakeholders’ Conference in Doha. The Council believes this conference should be fully representative of all of Darfur’s populations and interest groups. The Council reiterates the importance of increased participation of women in the Sudanese peace processes.
“The Security Council recognizes the potential complementary role that a Darfur-based Political Process (DPP) could play to ensure the participation and support of the people of Darfur and better enable them to be involved in the implementation of the outcome of the Doha peace process. The Council is nonetheless concerned that important aspects of the enabling environment necessary for a DPP are not in place, including: 1) the civil and political rights of participants such that they can exercise their views without fear of retribution, 2) freedom of speech and assembly to permit open consultations, 3) freedom of movement of participants and UNAMID, 4) proportional participation among Darfurians, 5) freedom from harassment, arbitrary arrest, and intimidation, and 6) freedom from interference by the Government or armed movements. The Council calls on the Government of Sudan and the armed movements to contribute to the creation of such an enabling environment for a DPP, working closely with UNAMID as appropriate, and in particular calls on the Government of Sudan to fulfil its stated commitment to lift the state of emergency in Darfur.
“The Council also calls on the Government of Sudan to release all political detainees, to allow free expression, and to undertake effective efforts to ensure accountability for serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, by whomsoever perpetrated.”
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