November 2007 Monthly Forecast

Posted 30 October 2007
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Status Update

Recent developments on the situations covered in this Forecast are addressed in the relevant briefs.  Interesting developments in the Council on other issues in October included: 

  • Côte d’Ivoire:  On 1 October, the Secretary-General’s UNOCI report expressed concern with the failure of the parties to adhere to the timetable established by the Ouagadougou Agreement (S/2007/593).  (Meeting the conditions set out in the agreement is a precondition to organising a presidential election in 2008.)  The Group of Experts on Côte d’Ivoire on 17 October reported resistance to embargo inspections as well as discrepancies between declared and actual armaments of the government and the Forces Nouvelles (S/2007/611).  At the time of writing, it was expected that both the Group’s mandate and the sanctions regime would be renewed by the Council on 29 October. The Secretary-General appointed Choi Young-jin of Korea as his Special Representative for Côte d’Ivoire.
  • Iraq:  In a 5 October presidential statement, the Council condemned the 3 October terrorist attack in Baghdad that wounded the Polish ambassador to Iraq and killed his driver and at least one Iraqi civilian (S/PRST/2007/36).  On 27 September the Secretary-General reported on steps taken to dispose of the UNMOVIC archives (S/2007/568). He requested some guidance from the Security Council on the duration for keeping the material sealed, whether earlier privileged access to the documents should be permitted and whether a mechanism should be established to advise the Secretary-General on individual cases for access. It seems that the Council is planning in the next few weeks to respond to these requests in a letter.
  • North Korea:  The 1718 Committee briefed the Council in consultations on 8 October.
  • Kosovo: The Council held consultations on UNMIK on 9 October and considered the Secretary-General’s report (S/2007/582).  
  • Afghanistan: On 15 October, Special Representative of the Secretary-General Tom Koenigs briefed the Council noting that progress had been made, including legislation upholding press independence.  However, weak governance urgently needed to be addressed and an integrated political-military strategy was required to combat violence in the country (S/PV.5760 and SC/9143).  
  • Georgia:  On 15 October, the Security Council adopted resolution 1781 extending the mandate of UNOMIG until 15 April 2008. It urged “all parties to consider and address seriously each other’s legitimate security concerns” and “refrain from any acts of violence or provocation.”  
  • Haiti:  On 15 October, the Council adopted resolution 1780 extending the mandate of MINUSTAH for a year.  While reducing the military component of the force to 7,060, the resolution increased the police component to 2,091 in order to realign MINUSTAH’s activities to reflect the changing circumstances on the ground. 
  • Security Council Elections:  On 16 October, Burkina Faso, Costa Rica, Croatia, Libya and Vietnam were elected to the Security Council by the General Assembly.  These five new non-permanent members will begin their two year term on the Council on 1 January 2008, replacing Congo, Ghana, Peru, Qatar and Slovakia. 
  • Peacebuilding Commission:  On 17 October, the Council debated (S/PV.5671) the annual report of the Peacebuilding Commission (S/2007/458). The chair of the Commission, Ambassador Yukio Takasu of Japan, noted the progress that had been made during the Commission’s first year, called for steps to be taken to include additional countries on the Commission’s agenda and advocated for enhanced coordination among relevant actors to strengthen the Commission’s work. Controversy is ongoing about the limited list of participants invited to speak in the debate. 
  • Nepal:  The Secretary-General’s report on 18 October noted the significant challenges that the peace process currently faces and called the postponement of constituent assembly elections for a second time “a major disappointment” (S/2007/612).  On 9 October, a statement was read to the press by Council president, Ambassador Leslie K. Christian of Ghana, expressing disappointment at the delay of the elections (please see UN Webcast archive). 
  • Guinea-Bissau: On 19 October, the Council considered the Secretary-General’s report on Guinea-Bissau (S/2007/576).  In a presidential statement, the Council reaffirmed its support for efforts to consolidate peace in Guinea-Bissau, expressed concern about drug trafficking in the country and stated that it would consider Guinea-Bissau’s request for inclusion on the Peacebuilding Commission’s agenda (S/PRST/2007/38).  
  • Western Sahara:  On 19 October, the Secretary-General’s report on Western Sahara noted that while Morocco and Frente Polisario had demonstrated a willingness to negotiate, their views on the status of Western Sahara were “mutually exclusive” and thus “prevented each party from seriously discussing the other party’s proposal.” The Secretary-General also recommended that MINURSO’s mandate be extended for an additional six months (S/2007/619).  At the time of writing, the Council was expected to renew MINURSO’s mandate by 31 October.
  • Terrorism: On 22 October the Council condemned the terrorist attack of 18 October in Karachi, Pakistan and urged states to cooperate with Pakistan to bring those responsible to justice (S/PRST/2007/39). 
  • Women, Peace and Security: On 23 October, the Council held an open debate on women, peace and security (S/PV.5766) and the Secretary-General’s report (S/2007/567).  A presidential statement reaffirmed the role of women in conflict prevention and resolution as well as in peacebuilding. It also urged the Secretary-General to increase the number of female representatives serving in “good offices” capacities and condemned violence against civilians, especially women and children, in armed conflict (S/PRST/2007/40). 
  • Middle East:  On 24 October, Under Secretary-General for Political Affairs Lynn Pascoe briefed the Council in an open session on the Secretary-General’s support for recent political dialogue between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.  He expressed the Secretary-General’s hope that the upcoming international meeting on the conflict would include significant Arab participation and help to create the foundation of a durable peace process (S/PV.5767 and SC/9155).
  • Security Council Annual Report: On 25 October, the Security Council adopted its annual report to the General Asssembly for 2006-2007 (S/PV.5769 and SC/9157). Slovakia spoke in its capacity as chair of the Informal Working Group on Documentation and other Procedural Questions and China spoke in its capacity as the drafter of the report’s introduction.
  • Sudan:  On 23 October, the Secretary-General’s latest report on Sudan noted the lack of progress with implementing the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, including north-south border demarcation, Abyei’s status  and preparations for the 2009 elections (S/2007/624).  The Council is expected to renew the mandate of UNMIS by 31 October. 

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