Friday, April 26, 2013

Cote D'ivoire: UN Security Council extends arms embargo

A UN peacekeeper with firearms collected from militias in Côte d'Ivoire. UN Photo/Ky Chung

UN 25 April 2013 – Maintaining that Cote d’Ivoire was still vulnerable to instability fuelled by available weapons, the United Nations Security Council today extended its arms embargo on the West African country as well as financial and travel sanctions on those who threaten the peace, until 30 April 2014.

“States shall take the necessary measures to prevent the direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer to Côte d’Ivoire, from their territories or by their nationals, or using their flag vessels or aircraft, of arms and any related materiel,” the Council stated, through its unanimous adoption of a resolution that also further refined the sanctions regime first put in place in 2004.

Until the same date, it also decided to renew the mandate of the panel of experts that assist in monitoring the sanctions regime, extending as well as well as measures preventing the importation of rough diamonds, which in the past have also helped fuel conflict.

In an April 16 briefing to the Council, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Edmond Mulet, said that despite considerable progress since the end of the violent post-election crisis two years ago, Côte d’Ivoire still faces significant threats to its long-term stability, including the presence of armed elements, transnational crime, terrorism, piracy, and a security sector in need of reform, a top United Nations peacekeeping official said today.

In today’s resolution, the Council said it would continued to review the measures, with a view to modifying them further or lifting them, in light of any progress achieved in relation to demobilization and disarmament of ex-combatants, security sector reform, national reconciliation and the fight against impunity.